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Dragon's Egg - Act I

Discussion in 'Dragon's Egg RPG' started by Steerpike, Dec 31, 2012.

  1. Phietadix

    Phietadix Archmage

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    "Perhaps we should Burnbright some armor?"
    ((I'll be unable to post again till late sunday night so don't except for me to respond to anything till then))
     
  2. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    This day seems full of surprises. The significance of Soma's acknowledgement of Burnbright's true name is not lost on me. Perhaps Father Harold's secret isn't so well kept after all. I wonder who else knows of Catli.

    "Greetings priestess. In matters of subtlety, I am known to be as deft as an ox. I won't insult your intelligence or my pride attempting. As such, let me state that I am interested in the recent activities and any far reaching ties to the past. You are the new priestess of Gefjon, burdened with the expectation of an entire village to produce as the former has done."

    Expectation is like a chain of forged steel that leads into the shadows, out of sight. The visible length dragged from the neck is uncomfortable but, after a time, bearable. Until the forgers of the chain yank from the darkness to bring you to your knees. I become aware of Soma's attention and the long pause of silence. Clearing my throat, I smooth my face of the smirk I'm sure it bares.

    "I would ask you to tell me all you know of Aslaug and the events that led up to her demise. Why was the temple relocated within this town after her death? Why not remain there and increase the protection? Better yet, why was the temple outside of town?" I clear my throat again, glancing at Burnbright. "How have you come to know her as Catli and what do you know of her past?" Perhaps a joke will smooth things a bit. "She states she wrestles bears."

    The thought strikes me that I should purchase a stack of paper and a quill so that I could write down my questions to help people recall and answer the entire list. As funny as the thought is, it may have enhance the presentation of my weak joke. "Why you? How and who made you a priestess? Why did you accept? And finally, why would someone name your acolytes 'traitors'?"
     
  3. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    "Cadell, before we make too many plans for armor, let's see what kinds of bows we can get for you and the other archers."


    ((PM'd Steerpike to see what bows/crossbows can be purchased. If there are heavy crossbows [1d10 damage], we're buying those.

    EDIT - Well... maybe not. Too slow.))
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2013
  4. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    ((Ankari, just to clarify a point - many people in Srilkind do know that Burnbright's real name is Catli. That is the name Father Harald gave when he brought her. The nickname Burnbright was given to her after she got to town. What people don't know, presumably, is that she's Aslaug's daughter. Or even that Aslaug had a daughter)).

    Soma nods at Ankari's questions. She doesn't seem offended by them. "Catli was orphaned after a raid of some sort on a village far to the north. At least, that's what Father Harald said when he brought her to town. In those days, he traveled to the north much more, before the Taint was as wide spread as it is now."

    The priestess smiles at Burnbright. "Are you trying to learn more about your people? You should ask Father Harald. He can tell you exactly where you were found, I'm sure. And, bears? Really, child."

    Burnbright reddens as the priestess continues:

    "I was chosen to be priestess because my mother served Aslaug in the old temple. Indeed, she died there during the raid. I had as much knowledge of Gefjon's ways as any left in Srilkind, and so I took on the duty. As for Finn and Koli..."

    The priestesses eyes glisten for a moment and she bites her lip, looking much younger suddenly. Then she regains her composure and says "I do not know why anyone would brand them betrayers, which was the word used. Yes, I saw the basement myself this morning...well, best as I can with these eyes. Finn and Koli did not dishonor Gefjon by serving in the temple of Tyr. There was no betrayal there."

    "As for the old temple...well, it is very old indeed. It was there before Srilkind was here. When I first became priestess, I thought about returning to the temple where Aslaug dwelled, but at first the memory of the attack and the dead that were found there was too strong. Then, over time, the Taint crept further south until it was within sight of the temple itself." Soma shudders. "It seems like a blasphemy to Gefjon herself, that spreading darkness. I didn't want to be within sight of it, and I doubt others would have either."

    "I did journey to the temple, though, and with a single purpose." The priestess leads you further into the altar room and points at one of the stones in the floor. It has a carving on it identical to the symbol on the door. "As a priestess of Gefjon, I keep a daily record of the business of the temple, its followers, and even my own thoughts." She kneels and with a bit of jostling, removes the marked stone from the floor. Beneath it you see a small space containing a leather-bound book, a quill, a bottle of ink, and a thin gold necklace. "My record, as well as small symbols of my devotion, are kept here. Within the earth, just as the seed is placed within the earth to be blessed by Gefjon before sprouting. Do you see? It is an old custom, and one which all priestesses of Gefjon follow."

    "I went to the old temple to retrieve Aslaug's records, for her flock was now my flock and my own record would build on hers. Only, when I arrive there I found no marked stone in the altar room. Instead, a stone much like this one was set upon a mantle. I searched the rest of the temple for Aslaug's records, but there were none. Of course, by that time the temple had likely been looted numerous times in addition to the initial raid. So I left, and began a new record."

    She looks Ankari in the eye. "I am not Aslaug. I have no special powers. I'm not sure whether she had them or not, though it appeared to all that she must have. I simply teach Gefjon's ways and care for the people of this village as best I may."
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2013
  5. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    As Soma speaks, I reflect on her condition. By her account, she is as young as she appears but something has drained the vitality from her body and has worn down her soul. I sigh, more to relieve the tension in my chest than in frustration. She serves as a reminder that some bear more scars when caught beneath the boot of the world.

    Most of what Soma shares is uninteresting but then, she speak os the old temple of Gefjon. Why would someone loot the records of Auslog? "Thank you for your information. One other thing before I go. Why would someone want those records? What would you, or any priestess, document in them that would be of interest to either looters or the ones that attacked the temple?"
     
  6. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    Soma frowns at the question. "There is no reason I can think of. We keep a list of our regular members, and things happening within their families - births, deaths, illnesses, and so on - so that we might keep them in our thoughts. We also keep a listing of what funds the temple has, and how those funds are used. A priestess might keep a daily record of her thoughts, as I do, and those also concern the temple and those who join us here to worship. Such records have no value to anyone outside of the temple itself."
     
  7. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    I suspected as much. I glance down at Burnbright and see the turmoil stalking her lengthen like the shadows at dusk. She is hunted. Someone wants to bend her inherited powers to their will. The realization steels my desire to have her under wing while we face the mysterious threat.

    "Thank you, Soma. We will see an end to the corruption choking Srilkind. If you know of anything that may aid us in this quest, please divulge it now. If I can do anything to repay your hospitality, please ask it of me."
     
  8. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    Soma kneels and reaches in to the hidden compartment in the floor. When she stands, the chain of the gold necklace is wrapped around her hand. She takes Ankari's hand, turns it palm up, and lets the necklace flow into his palm. It is a thing gold chain with a coin-like pendant hanging from it. The pendant has the emblem of Gefjon on it.

    "I do not have much of value to give, but I believe that in dark times the goddess watches over us. May she keep you safe."
     
  9. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    "I can't believe they carry armor in my size."

    The shopkeeper grunts that it was made for a man, like I never heard that one before.

    Ignoring him, I say to Cadell, "Now that you have proper armor and a proper sword, you really look like Líadan's knight in shining armor."

    He is a knight, Baldy!

    "Er… Sir Cadell."

    Now that he has proper armor and a proper sword, I better address him properly!



    ((2 scale mails + 1 longsword purchased; still have 85G from father added to the party's savings))
     
  10. Ireth

    Ireth Myth Weaver

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    I smile at Baldhart's words. "Thank you. I certainly hope so." I hope Líadan thinks so too; I wonder when I will see her again, and Queen Brígh, for that matter. It already seems so long since I left home.
     
  11. Sparkie

    Sparkie Auror

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    Cadell and Baldhart cut quite the dashing sort of figures in their new armor. Now we look like a proper bunch of True Soldiers. Still, it's not what's outside, but inside that makes a True Soldier. May Betula guide us.

    "If you agree that we're all set, then let us finish our buisness here and see if Ankari has learned anything useful."

    That came out a bit rude, didn't it? It must be this weariness of spirit from all that casting last night. I still don't feel like I can cast even a minor purifying spell. Hopefully I'll be alright tomorrow. New armor or no, my spells will be vital to our group's success.
     
  12. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    The thin chain and pendant feels like a block of heated iron in my hand. She doesn't know and I have developed an unexpected respect for this frail priestess. I gingerly place it around my neck and stuff the pendant beneath my tunic. The raised symbol cuts against my skin like a brand. I clutch the place above the pendant and work it around so the smooth side touches my chest. I hope the slow nod disguises my irritation and conveys a sense of solemnity.

    "Thank you, Soma. This is more than I could accept. I will not keep it, for it is a symbol of your station and deity. I promise to return it to your possession as soon as we see this curse ended."

    A need to repay her gnaws against my morals. She is a believer in an empty faith and a dispenser of lies. To give her anything in return would mark me a collaborator. Perhaps there is something else I can do.

    "I bid you farewell. Next we meet, I hope it is under auspicious conditions. Come Brightburn, let's join the others. Besides, I am in need of arrows."

    I herd the young lady with a protective hand towards the door. This meeting has carved a notch in my soul. Wisdom is like precious gems; it is found buried under layers of dirt and rock. One must ignore the exterior and appreciate what is produced. I look back at Soma and give her a nod. Whether she saw it or not, I can't be certain.

    Outside the pungent smell spoils the air and coats my nose. Why these people don't prefer living in a sanitary and beautiful environment is beyond me.

    "Lead me to the bowyer and then to the tailor that Baldhart used. My companions have their hearts in the right place, but their minds are slow to follow. We will make a deal, you and I. I will train you in the art of survival. Bow, arrow, knife and leathers will be your tools. We will train whenever time allows and you will not complain. You promise to never lie or exaggerate. Boasting, as you did when we first arrived, is a thin veil that covers the rotting fear in your heart. Such fear catches faster than wildfire and will bring the bravest to cower on their knees. You are a brave girl and must train hard at keeping up your bravery as you will with the bow and knife. If the need arises, you will resort to the bow. Never approach danger with a melee weapon.

    I want you to always listen to members of the group. My word will override all others. If I'm not present, or unable to speak, defer to Baldhart and Rydh. Train with those two as well. I'm sure Rydh will teach you letters and other general knowledge and Baldhart will work you until your muscles feel like sacks of water. In return, I promise to lay my life down for you. If I haven't missed my mark, so will Baldhart and the others. What do you say?"

    Burnbright purses her lips and squints up at me. With the unfiltered truth of the youth, she responds, "You talk too much."

    A chuckle bubbles in my chest and shakes my shoulders. "Yes. You are not the first one to tell me as much."

    "What did you think of Soma?"

    I pat the area where the pendant kisses my chest. "The people often state that Soma lacks the powers of Auslog. I did not know Auslog and the powers she possessed. Soma has her own power. Something that penetrates and softens. She is a good woman and undeserving of the expectations placed upon her. Now, stop avoiding the question. Do we have a deal?"
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2013
  13. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    Burnbright frowns, slowing. "I've always wanted to be a shieldmaiden, like Veborg was back in the old days. They fought their enemies face to face on the battlefield, and when they died their spirits went to Valhalla, where they live in glory until the last battle. When other people die, they go to Helheim. I don't want to go there."

    She stops in the street and looks up toward the sky, chewing her lip. "I...let me think about it."


    ((The armor and clothing will be ready by this evening. Go ahead any play out any other actions you want to take in town. After that, we'll move into Act II, which is going to be the journey to the temple. We'll also get Nihal and Ravana into the game between now and then. I don't want to cut anything short if there are things you want to do in Srilkind, but we should move ahead at the same time.

    One decision that needs to be made is whether to leave for the temple as soon as the armor is ready (meaning you'll leave a couple of hours before dark and still be journeying when night sets), or to rest another night and leave in the morning)).
     
  14. Legendary Sidekick

    Legendary Sidekick The HAM'ster Moderator

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    "Oh yeah, and before we leave… I know we're happy with bows. But how about arrows, Ca—er, Sir Cadell? Is 40 each enough—for you, Ankari and Aliron?"

    ((Forgot to PM Steerpike about arrows, but we did discuss them. Unless anyone comes up with a different number [either Rydh/Cadell suggests more/less arrows or the NPC has a different price], we spend 12G on 120 arrows, then leave the store with 73G remaining from Father Harald's contribution.

    Baldhart's heading back to the Crow to RP and rest.

    I need Ravana's character description to draw his avatar.))
     
  15. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    Children are like birds. If they perceive a threat, they will fly away into the waiting talons of a hawk. But matters must be resolved before we journey to the temple. I kneel down so that I can make eye contact with the child that is key to the success of this region.

    "Our wants are dictated by timing. I hope you realize your dreams, but that must come later down the road when your limbs are as capable as Baldhart's. You two share a certain affinity. She dotes on you as if you are her child sister. But wants are a thing of timing. Right now, you must not meet danger with an untrained sword. No one sings the praise of a fool. The bow grants compensation for inexperience. I know you want to be useful. This is the best way until Baldhart can make you the Princess Warrior you dream of being."

    I stand up and frown down at the filth on my knees. There is a difference between the unspoiled earth found in the forest and the thick, clinging mass on my knees. I try to clean it off as best as I can.

    "For now, lead me to the bowyer. We will leave to the temple before the sun rises. You must make your decision before the shops close for the day. I will not have you traipsing around the unknown in the threadbare clothing you wear as your only layer of protection."
     
  16. Ireth

    Ireth Myth Weaver

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    I nod. "Forty arrows apiece would be quite sufficient, I think."
     
  17. Sparkie

    Sparkie Auror

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    Baldhart takes her leave, and Cadell and I soon follow. Having counted out the coins, it seems we have about 70 gold left. Not bad, really.

    Coming out of the shop, I spy Ankari and Burnbright farther down the muddy track. He looks to be kneeling down in front of Burnbright, like he's trying to reason with her. I've got a bad feeling about that, but I get a bad feeling anytime Ankari says something anymore. Perhaps it's time for me to bury the hatchet. Whether I bury it in the ground or in his skull remains to be seen.

    "Cadell, if you'll excuse me I think I'll see if Ankari discovered anything interesting in Gefjon's temple."

    ((Cadell can come along if he wants, but if not Rydh will approach Ankari alone.))

    I walk over to them in a bit of a hurry, as Ankari rises from his crouch and Burnbright begins to lead him somewhere.

    "Ankari," I call from a-ways off. They stop and look to me as I catch up. Once I'm within earshot of normal speaking volume I ask "Did you learn anything useful in the temple?"
     
  18. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    The tension in Rydh's voice places a hard edge to his words. There are things that can be shared, and things that I won't. How do you tell a man who believes in a baseless faith that a woman of the same ilk has impacted me more than should be capable? I shift the pendant beneath my tunic to a cooler spot. Were it from anyone else, I would have refused the insufferable thing.

    "Hello Rydh. Burnbright is leading me to the bowyer to buy some arrows." I glance down at her and offer the warmest smile I can muster. "Yes, Soma told me much the same as Father Harold. The only thing that I can share differently with you is the knowledge that the Temple of Gefjon contained a hidden basin beneath the floor. There, much as the current temple, Aslaug would have hid a symbol of her office along with journals. Within those journal the temple would document assets, personal musings, and birthing records with their corresponding family trees."

    I pause to stress the significance of the last point. "I'm sure there would be many surprises in such a record."
     
  19. Phietadix

    Phietadix Archmage

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    "Did she allow you to see these records?"
     
  20. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    Matthew's voice startles me. I did not see, nor hear, him coming. The focus on Burnbright, and then Rydh, must have absorbed al my attention.

    "Greetings Matthew. You have the stealth of a wolf in a shadowed forest. I didn't ask. The new records wouldn't contain the information of the old. No need to chase after ghosts."
     
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