What's new

Chapter Thirteen: Hearts and Darkness

Status
Not open for further replies.

Kaerri

Dannigan's Lady
Administrator
Supporter
Character sheet
Hit Points: 26/26
Armor Class: 22
Touch Armor Class: 16
Spell Points: 3/3
Hero Points: 1/1
Mighty Blow uses: 1/1
Interpose uses: 1/1
Color code: 3399ff
A great flash of electric blue sped past you as you flailed in mid-air with nothing to grab onto.
For a heart-stopping moment, Bren was afraid they'd answered wrongly, and this was their punishment. He had just enough time for his regrets to start forming when..
Brendoran was on her head, Oreleth, Bria, and Oscar were along her open spine, Nivirea was held in her left front claw, Luna held in the right front, and Otiorin constricted up nicely in her tail as pretty as you please.
... they were caught and safely riding the undead dragon! Bren counted heads instinctively, but all seemed accounted for, and despite the sudden fall, it seemed they had indeed answered correctly!

She cackled like a witch. "Here I place thee and soon I shall take mine leave of thee! But first, note yonder chests. Treasure! Treasure for thee. One of the three remains while two fade into rust and dust. Whichever thou chooseth to open first shall remain. The rest shall wither and pass on like all of thee in good time."
"Thank you, Undying One," Bren managed, his upbringing providing politeness even through the breathless wonder of their fall, flight, and landing. He bowed respectfully, then turned to join the party's "huddle." "Knowing where exactly we are, or at least close enough, would definitely be a very good thing," he agreed. "I'm not sure how much SkySting is likely to know about our specific curse, but she knows of Mielikki well enough to know she's the Lady of Forests, so perhaps she knows enough about my lady-goddess's enemy to know what sort of thing is likely to work against her usual run of curses." He shook his head wonderingly. "Although her information may be outdated, or localized... she referred to Mielikki as the lady of 'jungles', oddly. In any case, it certainly won't hurt to ask. What shall our third be? Anyone have a personal query that they'd like to ask?"
 

Wolf Rawrrr

Wolf-Knight
Supporter
.:| Nivirea - The Sorceress |:.

Still shaken from the sudden drop and rise in the grip of the dragoness' claws, Nivirea didn't look like she was in the mood for conversation. She eyed Skysting with a calculated look but said nothing, simply nodding along to Luna's words. She looked awful for the mess they'd just gone through, but possibly for the first time ever, she did nothing to clean herself up - not dust off her clothes, not rearrange a single hair out of the many that were painfully out of place. Instead, she sat down against the rock wall and crossed her arms on top of Luna's spellbook.
 

Sherwood

Luna's Concubine
Supporter
Luna smiles, then says, "Well, if we cannot come up a third, we could always ask for details on what is in each of the three chests, so we would know which one to open up to best help us out."
 

Psychie

Princess Psychie
Oreleth looks up nervously at the massive skeleton. "Well, whatever we ask, we had best be quick about it before we anger SkyFang."
 

Dannigan

Kaerri's Man. =)
Supporter
I will edit this post properly later. =)

Oreleth looks up nervously at the massive skeleton. "Well, whatever we ask, we had best be quick about it before we anger SkyFang." (bold mine)
Oscar smacked his furry forehead with his paw. "Oh no! What black luck!"

Bria shivered. "What is it?!"

Oscar pointed at the undead dragoness and smacked his furry forehead with his paw. "We have erred, Bria, perhaps grievously!"

The great and fearsome animated skeleton aggressively uncurled and unfolded in a grand display of wrath. Lightning bolts, great and small, danced chaotically down her every limb. Wing-bones unfurled, she glared down on Oreleth.

"'SkyFang'? 'SKYFANG?!' 'SKYYYYFAAAAAANG?!' Thou dost dare mistake me for that lead-scaled, kobold-brained, gas-breathing iguana?!" She scowled and seethed with murder in her eyes. "Cry in terror, elfling! I shall teach thee the error of thine foolish ways!!"

With a swiftness of a true hunting reptile, the half-alive but fully-enraged dragoness flicked her smallest claw in Oreleth's direction. A flash of blue lightning struck Oreleth right in her backside with a violent clap of thunder following it.

POW!!

The undeniable power of electricity shot through the archer's entire body in less than a second. Oreleth leaped uncontrollably into the air, her limbs outstretched, her fists clenched, and her pretty hair on end. When she landed, she was transformed into a shuddering, trembling, stinging young elf as the aftershock of electricity faded.

For that single moment, Oreleth appeared quite comical; a fact the dragoness did not miss. She held in a snicker. Then another.

What does Oreleth do?
 

Psychie

Princess Psychie
Oreleth lets out a pained and surprised yelp as she jumps up into the air. Turning around and rubbing her bottom, she manages to stutter out, "M-my apologies, great one! I was only thinking of how much more powerful and noble you are compared to that upstart, and it just happened to slip out! I beg for forgiveness for my unworthy self!" She bows her head low, hoping that it will hide her embarrassment for the whole thing.
 

Dannigan

Kaerri's Man. =)
Supporter
How are everyone else's characters reacting to this?
 

Sherwood

Luna's Concubine
Supporter
Luna opens her eyes wide, expecting to see Oreleth get ripped limb from limb. The actual response is . . . much different. As SkySting smacks Oreleth, and the electric shock overtakes her, Luna is still for a moment, then she covers her mouth as the elf jumps and rubs her rear end. A giggle slips out, followed by another.
 

Captain Hesperus

On Vacation
Supporter
Otiorin Taletreader

As the answer to the riddle was given and SkySting lashed out, Otiorin was struck with despair. He had been so sure of the answer! As he plummeted, he tried in vain to reach Bria, to spend their last moments of life in each other's arms. But then all was resolved as the elder dragon swept them up and away. The flight was at once terrifying and exhilarating and it was all he could do to still the cries that threatened to leave his lips. He held them back lest they come out like cries of terror, not of enjoyment.
All too soon, the journey ended and they were deposited before the three chests and SkySting set them two challenges that would appear to be more difficult than her riddle. Three questions, three chests. He was about to join with the others in conference when Oreleth made her blunder. He turned and opened his mouth to give a warning, but it was too late. Lances of lightning lashed out and wrapped the unfortunate elf in crackling energy. He felt the dragon stir within him but diminished. Perhaps the manner of their transportation and weakening by Loviatar's curse had done something to weaken its power. Regardless, he did not feel the urge to stand in defiance of SkySting's spiteful attack. He remembered Koshianth's words that dragons were easily angered when it came to the matter of their names. He also remembered that dragons long held rivalries within their kind so decided to keep the knowledge of who his great-grandsire was a secret.
Instead, he went over and helped the Elf up, making sure first that the energies she'd been struck with had earthed themselves safely.
"Rue the day you misname a dragon, Oreleth. 'Tis no small matter of correcting an error. Some dragons harbor grudges and ill will that date back before the rise of even the Elven nations.", he said quietly, dusting down the dirt from her back as she rose.
 

Kaerri

Dannigan's Lady
Administrator
Supporter
Character sheet
Hit Points: 26/26
Armor Class: 22
Touch Armor Class: 16
Spell Points: 3/3
Hero Points: 1/1
Mighty Blow uses: 1/1
Interpose uses: 1/1
Color code: 3399ff

When SkySting began to shriek her anger at Oreleth's mistaken misnaming, Bren's first reaction was to jump between his friend and the dragon. But even he could not outrun lightning, and he ended up by her side only after the electrical attack had run its course. He looked her over with concern, but she seemed to be unharmed, which was a relief. Clearly SkySting had intended only chastisement, not destruction. And, of course, the fact that the dragon found the aftermath of her scolding amusing was also a good sign. However, it also underscored the need to not push her patience any further. Forgetting that not all of the party had chimed in on the discussion, he bowed respectfully to SkySting and, when Oreleth had made her humble apology, added, "We don't wish to prolong your stay any longer than you desire, great one, and so by your leave, here are our questions." Unless she made objection, he continued, "Firstly, we arrived at this place via some kind of magical teleportation. Would you kindly inform us where we are, and if you have any advice for returning to Highwind?" He paused at that, waiting to see whether she would count that as one or two, and to hear her answer.
 

Dannigan

Kaerri's Man. =)
Supporter
Instinctively, Bria of the Ko prepared to cast one of her healing spells at Oreleth, but caught herself when she realized the arcane archer's life and health were not threatened. With a whoosh, Bria sighed in relief and continued to watch the scene unfold before her. "Ooh! My heart is beating like a squirrel's!"

"And mine!" Oscar trembled.

The peaceful healer took heart as the two men in her party she trusted with her own life aided Oreleth. She relaxed and wondered. They are so different, Oti and Bren, yet so much alike. Where would I be without them?

Bria mused. It is so odd and wonderful to be so ignited to a wayward scoundrel like Oti. It's that big heart of his. Bren would be a fine lifemate for any woman too. He is so naturally holy. Perhaps Bren fantasizes of being with someone outside his background, like I have with Oti? I wonder what it would be like if Bren and Kaerri were together? What a couple they would make! Hmm!

* * *​

Unless she made objection, he continued, "Firstly, we arrived at this place via some kind of magical teleportation. Would you kindly inform us where we are, and if you have any advice for returning to Highwind?" He paused at that, waiting to see whether she would count that as one or two, and to hear her answer.
"Ahhh," the bony dragoness loomed and spoke in the Common tongue. "The Mielikkian holds his third question like a miser to his purse-strings! Thou art either wiser than thine youthful countenance or thou hast dealt with dragons before!" This last was said with suspicion.

Her eyes blazed with a sudden radiance, bold and blue. She glared at Bren, catching Oreleth in that horrible gaze, but not nearby Otiorin. He alone knew this for what it was. Dragon-sight! Otiorin knew a single glance at him now would reveal his heritage to her as plainly as the sun saw the world at every dawn. As he realized this, the familiar force in his mind that once haunted Oreleth now seemed caught up in great wonder. That force, he knew, had been watching all along.

SkySting writhed as she studied Bren. "Aye, paladin of the Green Lady, thou hast the soul of great experiences! Here, little lordling, is thy answer.

SkySting's roar was explosive. "Wither in fear, little creatures, for this be Pohjola, death-land of the eternal winter! Here, old and blind Loviatar, the goddess of death, decay, and disease rules as nowhere else in all the planes of existence!

"Thou stand one challenge away from the foul dungeons of the devastated Castle Anguish, its ancient walls and spires blown to dust by the great warring of two long-dead archmagi. Remember fondly the memory of thine homes, for thou are not likely to see them e'er again!"

Oscar the red panda did not miss the connection between her dragon-sight and Otiorin's bloodline. Quickly and with a serious glance at Bren, he shouted, "And what of Highwind? Is there no hope for us to return there?"

"And what hath we here?" The dragon swiftly swung her head, turned her attention to Bria, or rather the small furry companion on her shoulder. She grumbled. "Mmm? Thou art not the learned familiar some magic-user. Mayhap a polymorphed tutor along for the adventure?"

"No, dire one," Oscar straightened that he might gain more of her attention. "A reincarnated sage."

"And yet thy life-force is greater than thy companions own?"

"Indeed. I was not cursed as they were. I have come to Louhi's land in the north with all of my skills and faculties."

Now he had her attention. "'Louhi's land of the north,' aye? Well-armed with knowledge art thou? So thou knowest of this hated realm where I hath served as a blasted bridge, and yet I know naught of... Highwind. If I am to provide answer to thee, thou must teach me of Highwind."

SkySting turned impatiently to all of you for answer.

What do the Wayward Wanderers do?
 

Kaerri

Dannigan's Lady
Administrator
Supporter
Character sheet
Hit Points: 26/26
Armor Class: 22
Touch Armor Class: 16
Spell Points: 3/3
Hero Points: 1/1
Mighty Blow uses: 1/1
Interpose uses: 1/1
Color code: 3399ff
"Ahhh," the bony dragoness loomed and spoke in the Common tongue. "The Mielikkian holds his third question like a miser to his purse-strings! Thou art either wiser than thine youthful countenance or thou hast dealt with dragons before!" This last was said with suspicion.
Bren smiled wryly. As it happened, he had met dragons before, most of them thankfully neutral or favorably-inclined towards him and his friends.

If I am to provide answer to thee, thou must teach me of Highwind."
So either she doesn't know our world very well, or she's been here a long time. Probably the latter, Bren thought. Highwind had only been around for a short time by dragon standards -- even living dragon standards, much less undead. The others didn't seem inclined to speak up, possibly because, as far as he knew, they were all new to Highwind, and so he stepped forward to answer on behalf of the group once more. "Highwind is a young city, Undying One," he began. "It was founded just over a century ago, when the House of Wildegard of Summerset chose to move north and found their own kingdom. It is rather nearer the ancient Craitian ruins than Summerset, and near enough to the territory of Koshianth and Grimauldin that the Wildegards made a sort of truce with them that both might live in peace. Now folk of all races are welcome there, so long as they don't seek to harm Highwind or its people."
 

Dannigan

Kaerri's Man. =)
Supporter


SkySting's head rose up in confusion. She had not expected this. At Brendoran's words, her Dragon-sight immediately ceased to be for she no longer seemed to have the focus to concentrate on it. "Koshianth? Grimauldin? Together?! Can this be?!" She circled and spun about curving her reptilian skeleton-body about in ways not possible by living dragons. "Wildegard soundeth like a human name - and they hath made truce with this kingdom?!" SkySting's head swiveled about as she hissed and sputtered a slough of undelightful words in Draconic.

In Common, she roared. "They shall be sssorry! For when humans gather in great number, their nobility is more rare than a riled dragon's mercy! Mayhap in small fellowships like thine own there is a place for the compassionate heart, but e'er hath humanity only looked out for itself when in they rise and divide their power in their damnable castles! Better if Aftermath and Holocaust hath dealt with the goblin kings - their foolish evils are a hatchling's game to discern!"

"Highwind may prove that statement wrong, fearsome one. More than once have its denizens surprised even scholars with their good acts." Oscar nodded to her and to Bren too. The sage and longtime ally of every adventuring team Bren had ever been in approved of the young paladin's answers. Still, SkySting seemed like one to meander from thought to thought and furry sage felt it was best to help keep her focused on the Wayward Wanderers's own problems. "There must be a way to return to Highwind from Pohjola."

"There isss," she slithered and stared at all of you eerily, "but none hath e'er succeeded in it. They have met only death and despair. Their sorry corpses litter the grounds still. Thou wilt meet them methinks... or worse, become them." SkySting the Undying stood tall and sparking. She struck the earth with one bony claw. The rocks and cavern trembled and somewhere in these dark holes, the goblins and other nasties trembled too. "I hath answered thy first question. Now I shall answer the second. Listen well!

If you forget what is being told here, do not expect a reminder. That's called a hint! Hee hee. =)

SkySting said this but once. "The means to return to the Prime Material Plane and thy beloved 'Highwind' lieth in solving the Dungeons under Castle Anguish and recovering whatever hated thing that place keeps protected. Only there lieth the answer many Cursed before thee hath learned. Loviatar's curses tend to come in threes. Thanks to thee, I am on the last of my curses three! But are thou not still struggling with all of thine?

"Mine short meeting with thee hath told me all. Loviatar's curses three! Thy first curse is having been ripped from thine home of Highwind and deposited in this, the foul realm Pohjola. Thy second? The quashing of thine true experience and abilities, for thou art no childish novices. And the third... the exchange of soul and memory transference - 'tis a favorite of hers, I hear." With crackling teeth, the dragoness smirked at Luna and Nivirea. "'Tis a strange occurrence. How is it thou hath kept thine memories? All of the Cursed hath become different people entirely, but thou hast found a way around Loviatar's hold somehow. How was this done?" Her musing was mostly to herself.

She regarded Oscar from on high and the difference between dracolich and red panda could not have been more clear. "Of thine group, only the smallest of thee is not Cursed. As such, he can leaveth Pohjola at this very moment if he but hath the means. A fine thing not to be Cursed, is it not?

To Bren, she concluded, "Thy sssecond query hath been answered."

* * *​

Oscar gasped quietly in realization. He tugged at Bria's robes and whispered in her ear. Bria strode over to Bren. When Oscar spoke, all could hear him, but his point to the holy Mielikkian was direct. "Brendoran, would you allow me to ask the last question? Or, could I offer it to you for you to do as you wish?"

Bria asked. "You've learned something, haven't you?"

Oscar spoke with pride. "As SkySting has mentioned, I am still in possession of all of my typical faculties and knowledge. In dealing with our generous host, I believe I have properly configured a formula of sorts. A formula of wording."

SkySting, of course, heard all of this. She watched this unCursed little red panda with newfound suspicion. It was a sensation she found she rather liked.


kamil-tondera-rox-skull-dwa.jpg
(Image credit: Kamil Tondera)
GAME DETAILS Location: Before the Three Chests.
Mode: Exploration
Click Blue Box for Ambiance =)
"D&D Ambiance - Dark, Dank Cave" by Sword Coast Soundscapes

 

Psychie

Princess Psychie
Oreleth is feeling a bit out of her league. She is a archer, not a scholar. And right now, barely even that. Too bad that Oscar has a question in mind already. I could have asked if this dragon knows of the location of the Songbow. Alas, that is not to be. Today, we have other issues to worry about. "Please, oh wise and small red fuzzy being. If you have a question of import, ask it now so we do not anger our host any further with our delays."
 

Sherwood

Luna's Concubine
Supporter
Luna steps forward, and speaks to the great dragon. "I have a theory of just why the Curse was incomplete on us, Great One. This Curse was in the form of a small ornamental snow globe, that was to be delivered to Brendoran. I suspect that had he been the one to grab this globe directly, it would have hit us with its full force. Instead, Bria here intercepted it, and it was her sacrifice, her love, that was able to deflect the memory-altering portion of the Curse upon us."

"As I said, it is just speculation on why, but from what I have seen of the effects of the evil of the Goddess, and how love is able to thwart her, I do believe that my theory is close to the mark of truth."
 

Wolf Rawrrr

Wolf-Knight
Supporter
.:| Nivirea - The Sorceress |:.

"But that makes no sense!" Nivirea argued from over where she was, throwing her hands up in the air in an act of desperation. "If we cannot leave so long as we are Cursed, and one of the curses is simply the fact that we've been brought here, then that's impossible."
 

Dannigan

Kaerri's Man. =)
Supporter
(Big post time again! May a little dive into Sharseyan fantasy take your minds off your worries, friends! =) )

Bria clutched her fighting stick in dread. Inside, she suffered, but felt she dare not voice her feelings lest she chance angering the volatile dragoness and undo all that the Wayward Wanderers had yet accomplished.

As the cautious parlay continued, the peaceful healer glanced at each of her fellowship. None of them had seen it. The thought had not entered their minds. And so Bria felt a touch selfish that it resided in her own. It shook her inside, rattled her like a nightmare in the dark. She could hardly stand it. But what right did she have to voice this feeling over those of her fellowship? Since when did her desires and yearnings come before anyone else's?

So Bria continued to suffer in silence.

* * *​
"Instead, Bria here intercepted it, and it was her sacrifice, her love, that was able to deflect the memory-altering portion of the Curse upon us."

"As I said, it is just speculation on why, but from what I have seen of the effects of the evil of the Goddess, and how love is able to thwart her, I do believe that my theory is close to the mark of truth."
"Thou have quite a mind to speak thusly, human. But I have little faith in humans." SkySting listened to Luna with narrowed eyes and crackling claws. Small blue and white sparks leapt along her body and occasionally from it. She took one long look at Bria and snorted. "How 'noble' of her," she growled. "Thou must payeth her well for her to provide such sweet sacrifice."

"As for the goddess of disease, thou speakest truly, spell-flinger. E'en with nine progeny, love is one thing Loviatar hath always lacked. Methinks it is a feeling unknown to the crone."

'Crone.'

This last struck Luna and anyone in the Wayward Wanderers with a steeped in lore and religion. For in Highwind and Summerset and perhaps the entire continent of Averlund, nowhere was Loviatar told to have children, to be blind, nor old. In your lore, Loviatar was the youthful goddess of ice and winters and most of all, the Maiden of Pain. No one Luna knew referred to her as having dominion over death, decay, or disease.

Thus had Luna stumbled upon a great difference, and greater mystery, between Sharseya and Pohjola.

* * *​

.:| Nivirea - The Sorceress |:.

"But that makes no sense!" Nivirea argued from over where she was, throwing her hands up in the air in an act of desperation. "If we cannot leave so long as we are Cursed, and one of the curses is simply the fact that we've been brought here, then that's impossible."
As these thoughts cross the wizard as his mind, there came to her mind great number of tales, theories, philosophies, and histories, none of which had she ever studied. In the blink of an eye, Nivirea's new intelligence had called forth just about every tome, book, song, scroll, and spoken word that Luna had studied prior to becoming a novice mage.
All that knowledge was Nivirea's for the asking, but one glance at Luna the Fey Beauty, was enough to remind her of how things ought to be. Yet it was not her learning that replied to her statement.

"The curse, I surmise, brought and holds all of you prisoner here," Oscar the Sage noted to Nivirea, "or perhaps the snow globe brought us here and the curse keeps you here. The result is the same.

"Perhaps an an analogy of that particular curse is in order. Imagine you have been transported into, and locked inside, a burning house. The ability to call for outside help is denied you. Therefore, you must put out the fire using whatever you find inside the house, or perish in it. The house is Pohjola. The fire is that curse in question. To leave to Highwind for any kind of aid or answer appears impossible." Oscar smoothed a few out-of-place whiskers and looked up. "Is this theory sound, Undying One?"

SkySting grimaced and nodded undead gloom. "A house on fire indeed."

* * *​

"Please, oh wise and small red fuzzy being. If you have a question of import, ask it now so we do not anger our host any further with our delays."
Oscar waved his tiny black claws. "Such formalities are unnecessary between those who have faced life and death together. Oreleth of the Forest Eternal," he cupped his paws, "this red fuzzy being would prefer you addressed him as Oscar. That said, your words are indeed wise.

"SkySting the Undying," he called up to her in a most-careful and respectful manner. "You are familiar with the curses of these friends and heroes."

The grumbling undead dragoness rolled her empty eye sockets "Aye! That much hath been made obvious. Get to thine point, pipsqueak!"

"I present to you our final of three questions: What are the solutions to all three of their cur--"

"How do we change you back?!"

SkySting whirled. Oscar balked. The voice was female, young, and you knew it quite well. It belonged to Bria. She looked miserable. Her hands clenched together in prayer, the Ko monk looked up at the undead dragoness with tears forming in her eyes.

"What sayest thou?"

"I'm sorry! I can't stand it any longer! I remember my experiences concerning dracoliches... they are made, not born! That means you were a living creature, once! Like us! That's part of your final curse, right? Why you are called 'Undying'?

Bria stepped over and, so overcome with emotion that she forgot to ask permission, touched SkySting's forearm. The dragoness flinched in outrage, but did not recoil. Bria caressed the bare bone with great sadness. "You... You probably had pretty blue scales and stormy skin with lightning eyes and leathery wings..." Bria bit her lip and gulped. "Yes, our curses are horrible, but what is our pain compared to yours?

Bria sniffed and hugged SkySting. "If we get our answers and walk away, where does that leave you? Just another victim in Loviatar's grasp? Oh, isn't there something we can do?" She stamped her foot on the cavern floor and repeated. "How do we change you back?"

Bria looked to all of you with tear-stained cheeks. Keeping one comforting hand on SkySting, she reached the other out to you. "Isn't that the question we should be asking? I mean, aren't we adventurers so that we may bring goodness to others?"

SkySting took all this in with tremendous surprise and even a little awe. And for the first time in a dwarf's age...

...SkySting gawked and looked very much the fool.

What do the Wayward Wanderers do?
 

Dannigan

Kaerri's Man. =)
Supporter
Then SkySting, seeing two questioners instead of one and unable to figure out which to answer, she turned to Brendoran of Mielikki. She asked hesitantly, "What is thy question, leader of this pack?"
 

Sherwood

Luna's Concubine
Supporter
Luna gives Bren a gentle touch on his shoulder. "Bren, Bria is right. Ask how to break SkySting's curse. Dragons have a very long memory, and our good will here will come back to us tenfold. Its ok. Nivirea and I will find another way to turn ourselves back."
 

Psychie

Princess Psychie
Oreleth is shocked. Out of the Wanderers, only Luna and Nivirea are still trapped in the wrong bodies. If anyone is to want to ply the last question on how to break the curse, it would be them. I seem to keep underestimating the capacity for good will that humans can have. I still have much to learn.

"Brendoran, I believe that the decision should be made by those most in need of that third question, namely Luna and Nivirea. If they can come to an agreement about the content, I have no quarrel with trying to free noble SkySting from her endless prison here."
 
Last edited:

Kaerri

Dannigan's Lady
Administrator
Supporter
Character sheet
Hit Points: 26/26
Armor Class: 22
Touch Armor Class: 16
Spell Points: 3/3
Hero Points: 1/1
Mighty Blow uses: 1/1
Interpose uses: 1/1
Color code: 3399ff

Bria's outburst shocked the young paladin. For several moments, he had absolutely nothing to say, while his mind whirled and his expression looked very much like the flabbergasted dragon's. He'd never considered how or why SkySting was a dracolich. For his own previous encounters with another dracolich, the origin had mattered much less than the fact of its existence and his party's desire to end it. And yet... could he ignore Bria's point now that he had been brought to consider it? Undeath was, to his mind, a fate worse than death to those who didn't choose it for themselves. He came back to himself when he realized he was being addressed, not by one person but by three. He smiled hesitantly to SkySting, nodded to Luna with warm respect, and accepted Oreleth's opinion with another nod.

Then he turned to Nivirea and spoke gently, trying to be persuasive in the face of her obvious and justified frustration. "I too would like to help the dragon lady. She is as much victim as we. Yet Oreleth is right that you and Luna were to be the ones most affected by our intended question. What say you? Shall we proceed as we planned? Or shall we instead take this chance to offer aid to one who has suffered far longer than we? To defy the evil goddess who thinks she can cast us aside, cursed and helpless? She, no doubt, expects us to follow the planned route, the one which has caused so many to come to a foul end before us. Why not try something she won't expect -- maybe even can't expect?" He held out his hands to her, looking into her eyes, his own eyes, face, and body language all pleading for her to at least consider it.
 

Wolf Rawrrr

Wolf-Knight
Supporter
.:| Nivirea - The Sorceress |:.

Obviously frustrated, Nivirea returned Bren's look but remained sitting, and would not accept any invitation to rise. In her eyes, cool anger was giving way to resignation. She looked quite helpless then, on the ground in her disheveled, crestfallen state.

"F-Fine. Whatever," she finally said, in the voice of someone who'd given up. Then she looked aside, hiding her eyes, and would not look at anyone again. Her arms clutched Luna's spellbook as if it was the only thing she had left.
 

Dannigan

Kaerri's Man. =)
Supporter


Helping me write the scene today is Pink Floyd with "Yet Another Movie" from their magnificent album, A Momentary Lapse of Reason. Oh, and Nivirea. =)
Partial Lyrics
A man who ran, a child who cried
A girl who heard, a voice that lied
The sun that burned a fiery red
The vision of an empty bed
The use of force, he was so tough
She'll soon submit, she's had enough
The march of fate, the broken will
Someone is lying very still

Hopelessness.

Imagine a state of being where, if there is anything good in the world, you cannot find it. You cannot rouse yourself, cannot force yourself to care about anyone. Anything. Including yourself. Sometimes, especially yourself.

To lose your spirit in this manner is to reach a point of uncaring so deep that to feel it is like falling down the greatest of chasms, wailing, flailing, feeling completely helpless. All is seriousness. All is sadness. All is meaningless.

This is what it feels like to lose one's spirit to the awful power of depression.

Bria watched Nivirea falling off of this cliff and suddenly, her own desires and tears ceased as she realized Nivirea had not bonded with anyone in the Wayward Wanderers, but as far as she knew, kept her private matters to herself. Nivirea was suffering, yes, but unlike Luna who had Wolf, Bria who had Oti, and Bren who had his faith in Mielikki, Nivirea appeared altogether alone and in despair.

With one look of apology to SkySting, Bria ran to Nivirea as fast as she could.

* * *​

.:| Nivirea - The Sorceress |:.

Obviously frustrated, Nivirea returned Bren's look but remained sitting, and would not accept any invitation to rise. In her eyes, cool anger was giving way to resignation. She looked quite helpless then, on the ground in her disheveled, crestfallen state.

"F-Fine. Whatever," she finally said, in the voice of someone who'd given up. Then she looked aside, hiding her eyes, and would not look at anyone again. Her arms clutched Luna's spellbook as if it was the only thing she had left.
It was in that single moment, for Luna and Nivirea, that everything changed for them.

A radiance, soft and trickling at first, flooded into and throughout the cavern from nowhere. That lovely warm shine of purest sunlight seemed to touch everything in the cavern. Accompanying it was the sound of ice shaking and shuddering and finally shattering, loud and powerfully like an iceberg struck by Thor's own hammer. The sound shook the cavern in a way that startled you all save for SkySting who did not move, but watched. Then the echo faded, drifting away like a moment gone to time. For the third time, this had taken place, and for the third time there was a great change.

Luna immediately felt her strong emotions and inner power vanish, replaced by the marvelous strength that comes from intense study of arcane magic. A great fire seemed to rush inside of her and remain there! Her fey-granted beauty faded, restoring her to the gifts her mother and father had originally given her, and now thoughts of logic and higher education came to her as easily as rain under a thundercloud. Luna was a wizard once again!

Nivirea felt quite the opposite. Higher thinking and calculations and all those boring, boring things wizards had to pore and sacrifice for fled from her like a bolt of lightning to be replaced by that spontaneous arcane power she had known since birth! Immediately, her features became more attention-getting, naturally-striking, and fantastically lovely than most women ever came to be. A spirit filled her, free and whimsical, wild and without fear. Her fey blood had returned in all its glory, for Nivirea was a sorceress once again!

And this part is brought to you by Bria and ABBA and their very meaningful song, "I Have a Dream."
Partial lyrics
I have a dream, a fantasy
To help me through reality
And my destination makes it worth the while
Pushing through the darkness still another mile
I believe in angels
Something good in everything I see
I believe in angels
When I know the time is right for me
I'll cross the stream, I have a dream
I'll cross the stream, I have a dream

"Nivirea! Oooh! You did it!" Bria came to a halt, her sandals skidding on the chilly, cavern floor. She knelt before the black-haired loner and, if allowed, placed her warm hands over Nivirea's own. Bria's brown eyes tried to make contact with Nivirea's green. She spoke with all of the compassion and hope in her humongous heart. "I'm so proud of you! I looked over and saw your face so full of despair just now, but even then, you were selfless for SkySting's sake! Someone like Loviatar, even at her worst, probably only thinks of herself. You know, you displayed a trait I'm pretty sure the Maiden of Pain has probably never known - giving of yourself to someone else when you needed it the most! And that broke our first curse! Um, that's my theory anyway..." Bria beamed at Nivirea, her face full of pure joy.

"You're so pretty again! How do you feel?!" Bria turned to Luna too. "Is your brain back, Luna?"

Luna looked down and felt a familiar, comfortable weight in her hands. It was her spellbook.

Nivirea the Sorceress and Luna the Wizard were in their own bodies, with their belongings, and back to their own selves again!


kamil-tondera-rox-skull-dwa.jpg
(Image credit: Kamil Tondera)
GAME DETAILS Location: On the High Cliff Before the Three Chests.
Mode: Exploration
Click Blue Box for Ambiance =)
"D&D Ambiance - Dark, Dank Cave" by Sword Coast Soundscapes

 

Sherwood

Luna's Concubine
Supporter
Luna stands still for a moment, dumbfounded at the change. She then looks up at Nivirea, and with tears in her eyes, she goes over to the other woman and pulls her into a tight hug. "Thank you, Nivirea! If it were not for you, we'd still be stuck in the wrong bodies! Not that I didn't like being you for a while, it is soooo good to be back to myself again!" She releases Nivirea and pulls back, looking at her companion. "I will have to say, I now have a new appreciation for the differences in Wizards and Sorcerers!"
 
Last edited:

Psychie

Princess Psychie
Oreleth smiles wide, but doesn't sweep into the big group hug of Nivirea, Bria, and Luna. "We have successfully broken the first of the Curses upon us all. Now, we are one step closer to regaining what was lost of our experience, and then return to Highwind." Looking at the three as they hug, she idly comments, "If it were not for Bria's giving nature to suggest giving our last question to SkySting, then the two of you for accepting it, you would still be trapped in your opposite forms. Truly the power of giving and love is how we shall defeat the hated Goddess."
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Top