The party have concluded their business in Withick, having made an ally of Sprig, gaining a new companion in the form of the griffon Sir Gawain, and being rejoined by Aegis. However, not all is well. They have been effectively forced to flee the peaceful swamp town due to a new threat, a nefarious assassin and old enemy of Hermodur's called Gavrilo. Employed by Lysander, Gavrilo has delivered a mysterious dagger to the party, its purpose unknown.1447 posts and 8 image replies omitted. Click reply to view.
Not all is despair, however. The party have decided on a heading after much debate; they have opted to head southeast, retracing their original journey and traveling back towards Durenwol Fen. There, they hope to strike a deal with the Beldam, a captive spirit of the swamp, and have her keep the Cuckoo's Egg safe from harm in exchange for her freedom. To do that, however, they will first need to deal with their old acquaintance Black Pudding, an adversary of the Beldam. With his current whereabouts unknown, the party have opted to follow his trail, heading to his last known whereabouts: The cursed hamlet of Larkstead, which has been plagued by a false Oneiromancer. This mysterious entity is a puppet of Lysander and Grosvenor, intended to act as a threat to distract from their true intentions…
"I…" She begins, almost about to share her past. "… I will tell you when I am ready." She says, upset at her own lack of conviction.
After the trip, Tlawīli enters with a graceful nod and hands clasped. "I am not used to being a guest, forgive me if my manners are unfitting of your culture." she says, removing some of her armor and leaving her sword by the door. She sits down, trying to assess her wounds, both physical and mental.
Wake merely acknowledges your apologies with a nod. The interior of his house is quite homely; a small wooden cottage, with some nautical paraphernalia here and there. It is sparsely decorated; he seems to live alone.
Seeing you are injured, he rummages in a cabinet before passing you a bottle of golden liquid, fizzling with a soft glow. You've seen it before: Aqua Vitae. A healing potion. "You'll need your strength to survive," he says plainly before getting back to cooking. Seems to be preparing fish and chips.
"I can't offer you a roof for more than tonight," he says as he cooks. "Tomorrow, I'll take you to Broome. It's the closest thing to civilization you'll find this side of Braildorn. From there you're on your own. You have questions about this place, this land, I'll answer what I can."
"I understand. Your hospitality has already exceeded my expectations." She says, carefully sipping the potion. She surveys it's taste, seeing if it's the same as the real world.
She ponders the empty bottle for a long while, conflicted on what to ask. "I… thought i knew what this was. Another realm, beyond the veil of even the light and life. Somewhere Trakali could banish their most vile, the ahmiki
." She shudders at the word. "But this is not true. You are not of Trakali." She pauses again, carefully choosing her next words.
"Where are we, really?"
It's a standard health potion like any other.
"We're in the Echoes," he answers plainly as he cooks, the cottage filling with the delicious smell of frying fish. "What you've been told isn't untrue. Time is convoluted here, and those that are banished come from all different periods in history. We are outside of whenever you come from. I can only imagine you're from the Age of Steel." He doesn't elaborate on how he guessed this, for now.
"This land is a reflection. A ripple in space and time, they call it. Places and things that exist where we came from can exist here too. Devoid of life, different perhaps, but noticeably the same." He taps the bench. "This house was doubtless someone else's up above. I found it empty, and claimed it as my own, as is the custom."
"This place is not like the world we're used to. But in many ways, it's as if we never left. This is your home now, Tlawili Koalti. Such as it is."
He finishes cooking, serving up a delicious fried fish fillet with a side of golden chips and a slice of lemon. He serves you the plate, along with some water. "Eat," he says simply, and serves himself some as well.
"Ah." She takes some time to process this concept of anachronistic existence. "I think I can begin to understand what you are saying. When we are sent here does not matter. This place is outside of time." She says, the dots connecting in her head. "Fitting, the only place to put an ahmiki
." She says without elaboration.
Her solemn tone is broken a bit as she eats. "It is very good. Not like anything I have had before." She says between bites. "This is customary where you are from? A local cui-sine?" She says, still a bit stuck on that pronunciation.
After finishing, she speaks up. "If you do not mind my asking, you said I was from the 'Age of Steel'. While I do not understand that, I would like to ask: When are you from?"
He nods at your first question, without much elaboration. He seems curious at the use of the word ahmiki, but doesn't ask questions. You get the feeling most people in the Echoes don't.
"Long after your time, I'm afraid," he answers the second. "When I'm from, no one has called themselves Trakali in almost a thousand years. If the historians in the Dominion met you, they'd have several questions. I am no historian, but I know the name."
She recognizes the confusion at her language. "Ah, I admit I still speak in the old tongue in hopes that one day I may meet another speaker. Ahmiki
is the Trakali word for Immortal
it is a insult and a curse, but my customs are far from me now."
She closes her eyes and sighs at the thought of Trakali long gone. "I always knew it would come, I was just never sure how, or if it would happen in my lifetime. Nothing can be immortal. Even the brightest sun sets at dusk." She repeats the same closed eyes and sigh. "Strange, letting go of something you knew was already gone."
She looks at Wake with a nod. "Thank you. I owe you a debt."
"A debt I won't collect," he replies. "Don't be fooled. This land is rife with evil. Consider yourself lucky you weren't caught by bandits, or slavers, or worse. It's only right that some try to do right by others, to counteract the wickedness of some of this land's prisoners."
He looks out the window. "The hour is late," he concludes as you both finish eating. "There's a spare room over there. Tomorrow at dawn, I'll take you to Broome."
. Then I only offer my blessing and a promise I will repay this kindness to another." She says, gently outstretching her claw, glowing with her pure light.
She nods in acceptance regardless of his response, and takes her things to the spare room, hopefully being able to sleep soundly.
He nods back, shaking your claw with both of his paws.
As he retires to his own room, you make yourself comfortable in the spare room. It's a little dusty - Wake presumably doesn't keep guests often - but not uncomfortable. You fall asleep almost immediately, exhausted from the day's ordeals.>Sunbeam recovers all wounds!
That night, you suffer a wretched nightmare. You are trapped amidst an expanse of oily black. A shadowy elk looms over you, teeth dripping like teardrops from where his face would be. You try to turn away, but find you cannot move. The black tar at your feet begins to rise, swallowing you whole. Without moving, the elk draws nearer, reaching out to you with one hoof. He grabs your arm, and sprouts feathered grey wings. As the blackness engulfs you and drags you below, a single unknown word floats through your mind.Scriniarii.
You awake at sunrise, finding a concerned looking Wake standing over you, jostling you. "You were having a nightmare," he says, looking worried. "…It's time to go. I've packed some breakfast for the journey."
Tlawīli does not bolt awake from her nightmare. Instead her eyes simply open as her fear washes over her in tides. As she slowly gets over it, her lips form one word: "masatl
." She breathes for a few more moments, slowly getting up after. "I… have not dreamt in many years. This was not a kind return to it."
After regaining her composure, she gathers her things and sets out. "That nightmare.." She starts, but stops. "No. Best not to try and attach meaning to it."
"I didn't rest easy either. I've heard of such things happening recently. I feel there's a storm coming, and soon." Like you, it seems he'd rather not dwell on it much, motioning for you to follow to the boat. He grabs his equipment, including the strange metal pipe-like object he was carrying yesterday, and motions for him to join him. Breakfast on the move isn't as good as the home cooked meal from last night, being mostly biscuits and dried fruit.
She steps onto the boat, more assured in her sea legs this time. She sits quietly in the back again, surveying the sea around her. Eventually her curiosity gets the best of her and she asks.
"You said you come from a time long after mine. Is that where your weapon is from?" She says, looking puzzled at the tube on his back.
You set off. He starts rowing; he's presumably used to doing this as his main method of transport around the Echoes by now. You get a good view of the bay as you travel; it's mostly volcanic beach like you saw before, with the occasional crumbling ruin dotting the landscape. The water is clear and tranquil. Occasionally, a sea bird flies past.
He looks a bit confused at your question, then realizes what you're talking about. "You mean my rifle. I suppose you wouldn't know what it is. It's a ranged weapon. Very precise, and deadly, but not the easiest to handle. Unfortunate that I have to have it, but I'd be a fool not to."
He stops all of a sudden, his eyes narrowing. He seems to have noticed something in the water. He reaches for his rifle, cutting the conversation short. "Draw your weapon," he warns. "We're being followed."
She reaches back for her sword mounted on her back, assuming her usual stance. "Kel-pies?" She asks, trying to get used to the word. "Or worse than feral beasts?"
With the hand not on her sword, she blesses herself before the battle.
Inure (Dark) [1d10]
Overhealing [1d10]Roll #1 8 = 8
/ Roll #2 3 = 3
Perception [1d10]Roll #1 9 = 9
You protect yourself against black magic, just in case. Wake shakes his head at your question, seemingly unsure of what you're dealing with yet.
You spot a huge dark shadow move past the boat, much faster than Wake can row. You alert him of it, and he readies the rifle. Suddenly, a huge, bright blue tentacle bursts out of the water, covered in thick black bristles. It flails blindly, grasping at whatever it can!>roll to dodge
The sudden appearance of this creature rocks the boat violently!
Wake draws his rifle, firing a rushed shot at it!
"Why does everything here just try to kill me?" Tlawīli says, hopefully moving to the other side of the vessel in time to take a swing at a tentacle.
Weapon (Great) [1d10]Roll #1 3 = 3
/ Roll #2 9 = 9
As the larger target, you have a hard time dodging it. It scrapes your bare forearm, leaving a blistering, stinging touch like a jellyfish. Your arm starts to throb, a burning sensation spreading up it!>Sunbeam takes 1 hit>poisoned: +1 hit/rd for 3 rds or until helpless
You manage to slash at the tentacle, drawing red blood from the creature. Wake follows up with a loud shot to it, making whatever this thing is retreat momentarily. He works to steady the boat. "It'll be back," he warns you, pointing out the shadow in the water you saw just before. It looks like some sort of cetacean, from what you can see, swimming out and starting to come back around for another try. "Mirodan don't give up easily. Get ready…" Wake takes the time to reload his rifle, keeping an eye on the incoming creature.
She winces at the pain, quickly realizing it's poisonous nature. "Miro-dan? Hard to be familiar with this wildlife. Next time, tell me if they're poisonous before it hits me." She says with a bit of sass.
At the mention of it returning, Tlawīli holds her blade in both hands, ready to swing as it comes up. She also keeps her eye towards Wake's end of the ship, ready for attack from any angle.
Watchful Eye (Wake) [1d10]Roll #1 6 = 6
He doesn't seem to find it very funny. "They never come out this close to the shore… This isn't right…"
He trains his rifle on the Mirodan as it comes back around, breaching the water and unfurling its long, frog-like tongue to lash at you both again!>roll to dodge, instant
Wake jerks backwards to dodge it and fires a marksman's shot at it, quickly adjusting his aim by your hand!>Watchful Eye roll expended on his attack roll
"I wouldn't know." She says, matching his lack of humor.
She quickly dives to dodge the tentacle before swinging down at it again. "If we cannot have it die, we can make it leave us alone. Why did they avoid the shore before now?"
Weapon (Great) [1d10]Roll #1 10 = 10
/ Roll #2 5 = 5
You jump upwards and fly over the grasping tendril, avoiding getting raked by its poisonous grasp. Wake curls up into a ball, then fires a precise shot into the water, hurting the Mirodan itself. You hear a muffled lowing sound from underwater, then it swims off, wheeling about for one final attack.
"Most of them live out in open water, close to the Isle of Glass. It's cursed by those creatures. What could drive them this far inland…"
You get a better look at the Mirodan as it swims off. It resembles a dolphin, with a mane like a lion, with the same seaweed appearance as a kelpie's. It has a reptilian head with a maw full of sharp teeth, and a long, prehensile blue tongue.
As it begins to swim through the water to attack again, Wake glances over to you as he readies another shot. "You can fly. Do you think you can attack this beast from above?"
"If it comes up, I will come down on it." She says, floating up a bit. "Swing for the eyes?" She asks, preparing herself for the poison this time.
Inure (Poison) [1d10]
Overhealing [1d10]Roll #1 9 = 9
/ Roll #2 4 = 4
"Aim for the head," he nods, preparing himself for the incoming attack as you protect yourself from further poisons.
You see the Mirodan do an about face and come surging towards you; then, it dives sharply downwards and vanishes out of sight. There's a tense beat before it slams into the boat from underneath, knocking you both off balance!>roll to not fall in the water
Tlawīli groans as she tries to grab onto anything still aboard the vessel in an attempt to keep herself on it. "Is it just playing with us at this point?" She shouts, mostly trying to get a response proving Wake is still safe.
Don't get Soaked [1d10]Roll #1 9 = 9
No response from Wake. In fact, looking around, he's not on the ship at all. You see some ripples on the surface of the water and a flailing silhouette beneath the surface.
"No, no, no!" Tlawīli shouts, shedding what armor she can before diving towards the silhouette, attempting to breathe light to help her find Wake.
Dragon Breath: Light [1d10]
Finding Wake [1d10]Roll #1 7 = 7
/ Roll #2 3 = 3
You dive into the water without a second thought. Visibility is high, but it helps illuminate the scene. You can see he's been grabbed by the Mirodan's tongue; it's swimming away with him in tow, kicking and scratching with his natural claws against the ropy appendage. You can't hold your breath for too long underwater.
Tlawīli climbs back onto the boat in a hurry, grabbing her sword and Wake's strange weapon as quick as she can, and then launching herself off into the sky in pursuit of the monster. In the air, she tries to track its movement to predict where it might be so she can come down on it with her blade.
Navigation(ish) [1d10]Roll #1 1 = 1
You fly up. It's difficult to track, but you can just see the shadows of the Mirodan and Wake darting off into the waters. It swims faster than you can fly; you'll only have one shot at this.
She grits her teeth and beats her wings against the morning air as hard as she can, almost trying to claw at the winds themselves.
Upon realizing she won't be able to outpace the monster, she decides to go to take her only shot now. She debates using Wake's strange bow, but chooses her blade instead. With a single deep breath and a word Tlawīli tries to strike true.
Weapon (Great) [1d10]Roll #1 10 = 10
You fly sword first out of the air, plunge into the waters. With a single powerful movement, you use the momentum to bring your blade down in an arc of obliteration. Steel meets flesh and bone, carving through the Mirodan's rubbery hide, decapitating it in a single blow. The water is filled with purple ichor, obscuring your vision as the carcass begins to sink to the ocean's depths.
Looking around quickly, you spot Wake floating in the water, unmoving.
"No, can't…" She starts, but stops and flies wordlessly to Wake, lifting him up and hopefully taking him back to the vessel. "…was I too late?" She asks, not sure if it's to herself, Wake, or the gods.
Carry Cat [1d10]Roll #1 6 = 6
You manage to grab him and swim up and out of the water. Not a moment too soon either; you see several small sharks starting to swarm to the cloud of blood left behind.
You haul Wake up onto the ship. You're not sure whether he's alive or not.
"Wake?" She asks, unsure of what to do. "Wake?!?" She asks again, noticing the same markings she suffered when attacked. She quickly brings her claw down to his chest, slowly glowing with light as she tries to protect him.
Inure (Poison) (Wake) [1d10]
Overhealing [1d10]Roll #1 7 = 7
/ Roll #2 4 = 4
You protect him against the poison, halting its spread through his body. Still nothing from him.
She takes a deep breath, and tries to remember some of what she was taught as a healer. She leans down to him, her ear over his mouth, looking and listening for his breathing while keeping a finger on his neck, feeling for a pulse. With her spare hand, she goes through her satchel to find any sort of healing salve for his actively bleeding wounds, and to use the satchel to cover them.
Protect this one, he is not scalekin, but he has saved me as I hope you save him."
Improvised Healing [1d10]Roll #1 2 = 2
He seems to be alive, just unconscious. While you can't find much to heal him with on you, you recall the healing potion he shared with you last night. Perhaps he has some on board. Or perhaps you can find some other way to help him.
On discovering his condition was stable Tlawīli breathes a long sigh of relief, dropping her shoulders while remaining on her knees. "No god willed that" She says to herself, not really thinking about it all that much.
After that moment, she places Wake's gun down near him and her sword down with the rest of her things and searches around the ship a bit while assessing any damages it could have suffered.
Search [1d10]Roll #1 5 = 5
The boat seems fine. You look around for a bit, but can't manage to find anything to help Wake.
"Under the seat."
Looking behind, you see him struggling to sit up, feebly pointing where he indicated. He's hurt, but it looks like he'll survive.
"Oh." She says, going over to lift the seat up and search inside. Obtaining whatever is within, she heads back over to his side.
"Where are your injuries? I have stopped the poison but there isn't very much I can do." She says, trying not to dote on him.
Inside are some emergency healing potions he packed, as well as a box of medicinal herbs and bandages.
He seems too weak to talk much, instead indicating where he was attacked; he has several poison marks over his right arm, and some cuts on his torso.
As you treat his wounds, his strength begins to recover after drinking the potion. "Thank you," he says quietly. "I suppose this repays the debt."
"Wasn't expecting it so quick." She says, stifling her desire to let out a small chuckle. "I can row from here if you tell me where we are headed." She says, confident in her seafaring skills.
After getting things set on the vessel and making sure Wake is comfortable, she goes to take an oar.
He nods at your offer, pointing you in the right direction.
The rest of the journey is rather uneventful. Still recovering from the attack, Wake talks even less than usual, save to give directions. You eventually begin to come up on the town he called Broome; if it weren't for his directions, you wouldn't recognize it as a settlement from afar. It is a cliffside cove packed to the rafters with ancient shipwrecks, as if they've been gathered and mashed violently into the one place. Ships of all shapes and sizes make up this place, clustered next to and even on top of each other, some at awkward angles. Some, you notice, are even jutting OUT of each other, as if they've phased into each other and merged. You can see several smaller ships going to and from the place, and in the town, you can see its denizens flying around or crawling like monkeys up the rigging connecting the ships.
"This is Broome," Wake croaks. "Neutral ground for many in these lands. Be careful who you speak to in this place. It can get unruly." Looking around, most of the ships that are seaworthy look rather menacing; you can only assume this place is a haven for pirates.
She looks around, in awe of the craftsmanship of the ships looking so futuristic to her. Her eyes also go to the ones working on ships, reminding her of times in both Trakali and outside of it. After gathering her things and Wake's she turns to ask him.
"Is there somewhere I can take you for further care?" She offers, feeling inadequate in her own abilities. "Wounds can last long after the pain ends, Kalidan." She says, not noticing her slip on names.
It goes over Wake's head. "I will seek out a friend in town who can treat this. There's nothing more you can do for me now. Thank you."
You bring the fishing boat up at an unused jetty. Wake is strong enough to walk by now, gathering his belongings and getting off the boat. Before he starts heading off, he pauses, digs in his pocket, and gives you some spare change; the coin is similar to what you've seen used in your time. "Even here, money talks, I'm afraid. Take this. Rent yourself a room in the tavern called Her Majesty. Speak to the owner Parzival and mention my name. He'll be able to find you some honest work, if you're willing to stay.">+50 bits
She takes the coinage with a nod. "Thank you. May you always have a friend in Tra-" She stops herself. "May you always walk in the light." She says, putting the coins in her satchel.
"I will stay, but not for long. Growing attached to another homeland…" She loses her meaning. "… I cannot do it right now." She says, conflicted on her conviction.
Tlawīli walks away, taking in the sights of a new town as usual, but not hesitating to find the tavern as soon as she can.
Navigation [1d10]Roll #1 5 = 5
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He extends his hand in friendship to you. "Goodbye for now then, Tlawili. I hope you find some peace in this land." With that, he nods goodbye, and you go your separate ways.
You set off into Broome, with little more than the clothes on your back. As you explore this strange place, with its unfamiliar technologies and strange races, you ponder the possibilities. This is a new beginning. What has happened cannot be undone. It is on you now to start again.