The High road from Freeport.   Posted by TheDudeAbides.Group: 0
Devi McCain
 player, 55 posts
Thu 3 Jul 2014
at 19:05
Re: The High road from Freeport
When she woke up her bones were stiff. It was like that most mornings nowadays, but she still wasn't quite used to it. She managed to work herself into a sitting position and then started rubbing life back into her sore muscles like an old biddy. Normally she'd spend some time focusing her mind as well by some simple exercises with her magic, but she didn't want to expose herself to these strangers just yet. Right now she still had an advantage, and that was just how she liked it.

Instead, she turned her thoughts to the dream. After magic found its way into her life she had slowly gained more and more knowledge of the subject in her quest to learn and harness it. Early on, Devi had realized the only way to true enlightenment was to let go of old superstitions and fears. She put no stock in tea leaves and soothsayers, and felt a twinge of spite when she dwelled on the notion that most people willingly let themselves be fooled. They preferred the comfort of lies because the truth contained too much uncertainty for them. Fools.

This rational approach to all things strange had been a great boon to her. In this case, it lead her to the conclusion that the dream she had, and that the others had apparently shared, held within it some meaning. What that meaning was, she wasn't sure yet. It depended on what the others had heard.

She razed her hands through her mane of red hair and yawned. Her fingers tingled painfully but she forced herself to reach out for the food while considering her options. She would be traveling with these people for quite a while. The priestess had seen something in them all - something that Devi perhaps could not see, but if there was one thing she trusted in unfailingly, it was the light. Lilith had guided her here on her quest for knowledge. Building trust was the first step she needed to take, even if some of these people didn't quite seem worth the effort required.

"I had the same dream," Devi spoke. Her voice sounded hoarse, and she cleared her throat before continuing. "One wonders why mystical dreams can never come in clearer forms, hm? Mine was.." She made sure she still recalled all the lines before reciting them:

A door within the earth awaits
no darkness can pass through
the follower of light debates
in fear of what she must do
for the sacrifice of power may
drive back the night and awake the day


No idea what it means."
She felt she could afford herself a small lie after being so forthcoming. Her interpretation of the lines was her own business. "This is good food, by the way."

This message was last edited by the player at 19:13, Thu 03 July 2014.

Jada
 player, 64 posts
 Beast-Kin
 Monk
Fri 4 Jul 2014
at 02:08
Re: The High road from Freeport
Jada sat motionless and silent, patiently listening to the others. Without warning he spoke. "The meaning of those words actually seem rather clear for a prophetic dream. If only there was more certainly of this sacrifice working.. As stated it implies that failure is a possibility. For me the man said:

The winding peak to darkness lost.
A gift of sight with blood the cost.
The map to pulsing light will rise
and burn away the web of lies.
"

He paused a moment before continuing. "So far it seems that our destination is a mountain overtaken by the spreading darkness and a lady follower of light will be called to make a sacrifice." He finished before opening his eyes and looking to each of the women for a reaction.

This message was last edited by the GM at 17:06, Fri 04 July 2014.

Lucinda Eravyn
 player, 160 posts
 Elf
 Alchemist
Fri 4 Jul 2014
at 05:49
Re: The High road from Freeport
Lucinda was actually surprised enough to look away from her component gathering. These dreams, there was no way they all had different parts, right? She was a woman of ration and alchemy, this talk of prophetic dreams was a little bizarre to her. it didn't seem like something from real life it seemed more like something from one of her stories. But then again...this really was a lot like one of her stories in a lot of ways. So maybe this could be important too. She listened closely to the various prophetic words that each had related.

She wasn't sure what the first one meant of course, clearly it was speaking of some sort of underground area, but she did not understand what it meant by 'sacrifice.' Frankly she didn't even like the word. It sounded far too scary for her. She hoped that, whatever it was, it wouldn't be too much of a sacrifice.

The second one was slightly more interesting. Maps of pulsing light and winding peaks were always fun to think about. Her eyes narrowed slightly at the words about blood. But that map of pulsing light sounded very interesting, burning away webs of lies was like finding new truths, something she always loved to do.

Still in her pajamas, Lucinda moved over to the rest of the group holding a basket of new alchemical components she made from the flower. She rooted through her bag for one of her morning potions and popped the cork, taking a sip. Wait a moment...in times like this it was right to offer drinks to fellow companions. She had read more than enough books to realize that much. She pointed the open potion bottle out to the rest of the group.

"U-um...I heard a few words as well...

Deep beneath the crumbling rock
north from the peak fly like a hawk
the crooked arm bends westward ho!
where water springs the heroes go
bound within the chamber bright
the living, breathing heart of light
the gift of gods the legends say
to keep the evil ones at bay
"

She said rather softly.
Lalita Chandra
 player, 99 posts
 Beast-Kin
 Caster
Fri 4 Jul 2014
at 14:40
Re: The High road from Freeport
As Lalita listened to her fellow comrades, she gave small acknowledged nod. It was obvious by now that they all had the same dream with different messages given by an old man. Who was that old man anywaves? From how he was dressed he seemed...nah. Best not to sink aboat it. She would have to dive into this a little moor later.

Ready to give her piece of the puzzle, Lalita took in a deep breath and stated. "Mine was a bit...ominous."

"The child of light may bring again
the rise of darkness and fall of man
for truth in stone may question make
and cause the holy, their oaths to break."


The meaning behind this seemed at bit obvious, though she rather not linger on it.

This message was last edited by the player at 00:29, Wed 09 July 2014.

Lynessa Crescent
 player, 87 posts
 Human
 Fighter
Fri 4 Jul 2014
at 15:58
Re: The High road from Freeport
Lynessa listened to each of her companions in turn, chewing her breakfast thoughtfully as each new piece of the puzzle was revealed. It seemed obvious that their dreams were connected somehow. She wondered if the High Priestess had sent them, of if they had come from someone else.

She showed no reaction to Jada's suggestion that a follower of the light might be called upon to make a sacrifice. Lynessa didn't think of herself as "a follower of the light." The phrase made her think of priestesses, or people who had devoted their lives to the light.

When Lalita had finished, Lynessa shared her dream without introduction.

"Ascend the highest mountain top
and seek the holy altar
the cold steel bites into the flesh
be strong and do not falter"


"I have no idea what it means. I'm afraid I've never been very good with puzzles,"
she admitted. She nodded toward the potion that Lucinda had indicated. "Are you offering," she asked the elven girl.
TheDudeAbides
 GM, 356 posts
Fri 4 Jul 2014
at 17:28
Re: The High road from Freeport
    The group sat about a fire eating a delicious breakfast and discussing the events of the previous night, when the sound of pounding hooves is heard in the distance. In the clearing, off the beaten path, the party is obscured and can only see flashes of the road through the trees. A single rider passes by the patch of trees, his uniform clear against the morning sky; he was a messenger. Likely dispatched by the guard in Freeport, he was riding north at full speed; driving his horse to it's limit. His face painted with fear and sadness and a precious letter tucked within the folds of his tabard.
Lucinda Eravyn
 player, 162 posts
 Elf
 Alchemist
Sun 6 Jul 2014
at 04:43
Re: The High road from Freeport
Lucinda nodded at the armored swordswoman, not knowing exactly what to say. She tapped her chin for a moment and thought that she was forgetting something rather important. She then nodded. It was rather obvious now that she thought about it, it was something anybody who had made this potion before should know. She frankly thought that everyone should know about it. But again she remembered the warnings of her parents. They told her that out there, out of the guild and the city, there were so many people who had no idea about anything. "U-um...o-only take a little sip of that...."

She looked back as the man who was racing forward on the horse. what was she supposed to do about that? The best thing would probably be to let him continue about his business for sure. But then again...she didn't always know what was the best thing to do in these sorts of situations. She reasoned that in stories like this...meeting a messenger was probably very important. She spoke up. "U-um....hello?"
Devi McCain
 player, 58 posts
 Human
 Caster
Sun 6 Jul 2014
at 19:12
Re: The High road from Freeport
Devi looked from the potion to the source of the sounding hoof beats with the same highly critical expression. To be honest she wasn't convinced the young elf was completely right in the head, and until she saw any conclusive proof one way or the other, she wouldn't touch any potion the woman offered her with a ten foot pole.

Lucinda's reaction to the messenger didn't do much to change her opinion. There was a chance this was some sort of trap, or that the man was chased. On the other hand, she considered as she got up with a grimace, perhaps the messenger had news they could use. Not everything of import could be imparted by unnatural dreams, after all. Luckily, the man was likely riding too hard to hear her soft call over the noise. For now she saw no reason to race after him, but if they others felt differently she'd follow them.

In the back of her mind she mulled over the lines they had all heard. She wondered if the bard's portion had a new angle to add. In the dream, the old man had felt...good to her, but she didn't trust emotions. They were too easily manipulated.

This message was last edited by the player at 19:33, Sun 06 July 2014.

Lalita Chandra
 player, 102 posts
 Beast-Kin
 Caster
Mon 7 Jul 2014
at 13:24
Re: The High road from Freeport
As the messenger rode on by, Lalita had to wonder. From the look on his face, did the priestess die? Was that the news he was carrying with him? If so, she could understand why he was also afraid. Because that meant a small bit of hope, died as well.

However, Lalita was no mind reader. So to say whether or not this was actually the message the man carried, was up for speculation. In the mean time she thought aboat all that had been glubbed and realized that Jericho hadn't mentioned his dream yet. "I wonder what the old fish carped to him." she thought as she looked over at the bard. If the man didn't want to reveal what he saw that was fine. After all, she didn't expect everyone to be as forthcoming as they were. She shrimply continued to sit quietly and wait for what the others decided to do.
Lynessa Crescent
 player, 90 posts
 Human
 Fighter
Mon 7 Jul 2014
at 16:56
Re: The High road from Freeport
Lynessa's hand stopped a moment before it wrapped around the potion bottle. Only a sip? She wondered what would happen if she took a long drag on the potion. Perhaps her skin would turn purple, or she'd grow an extra limb. She trusted Lucinda, and trusted Alchemy. It would be best to do what the elven girl said. She brought the potion to her lips and took in a small sip, not even enough to really taste it.

She was about to thank Lucinda, and ask what the potion was for, when the unmistakable sound of hoof beats broke the relative silence of the morning. Through the trees, she caught glimpses of the rider. She recognized his uniform, and with the pace he was setting she judged that his message must be important. Had something happened in Freeport? A bandit raid? A fire perhaps? Had she abandoned the Guard only hours before she was most needed?

"HAIL!" she called in a voice much more commanding than Lucinda's had been. She stood up and raced for the edge of the clearing, hoping to make herself visible. Still, she doubted she would be seen or heard. And with Jasper still tied and unsaddled, she couldn't give chase.
TheDudeAbides
 GM, 362 posts
Mon 7 Jul 2014
at 19:06
Re: The High road from Freeport
    The messenger, riding at full speed, was raising dust in the distance as Lynessa rushed the edge of the clearing; if he heard her call at all, it appeared to make no difference. He was tucked in for a long ride, and would likely not stop even if he had heard her. Tiro was still several days north and given his urgency and official tabard that was likely his destiny. A small wren sat on a branch behind Lynessa and chirped indignantly at her sudden appearance. If nobody knew any different, it would appear the world was at peace. The morning sky was a beautiful blue hue and not a cloud was in sight.

This message was last edited by the GM at 01:05, Wed 09 July 2014.

Lucinda Eravyn
 player, 166 posts
 Elf
 Alchemist
Mon 7 Jul 2014
at 19:24
Re: The High road from Freeport
Lucinda looked curiously at the swordswoman. She hadn't drank enough for the potion to take effect. She was  a bit surprised. Were her parents right? Did the average person really not know anything about proper doses for potion use? It seemed bizzare to her. She waved her head from side to side to the woman and spoke up. "U-um...you can drink a little more than that...I-It's good in the morning a-and it tastes delicious."
Lynessa Crescent
 player, 92 posts
 Human
 Fighter
Tue 8 Jul 2014
at 17:49
Re: The High road from Freeport
Lynessa reached the edge of the clearing just in time to see the rider's dust cloud in the distance. She had been too slow to catch his attention. Or too quiet. Or the messenger's task was just too important for distractions. Likely, he was heading toward Tiro. She assumed that the outpost would be their next destination. Any big news they would learn upon their arrival, if they didn't catch up to the messenger before hand.

She returned to breakfast, and her potion-sipping skills were promptly corrected by Lucinda. "Well, you said only a sip. I figured I was better off taking as small a sip as possible so I didn't... get sick or anything," she explained, taking the offered potion a second time.

This time, she took in enough of the potion to actually taste it. Her first instinct was to spit it out. It tasted like a grapefruit had been left to soak in a barrel of pitch until it spoiled, then the rotted juices had been added to a mixture of ash and water. She felt her throat grow tight as if trying to prevent her from swallowing the foul concoction, but she forced it down. Tears twinkled in the corners of her eyes as she swallowed.

"Thank you," she said in a hoarse voice, remembering her manners as she handed the potion back to Lucinda. Was this really what the elves considered delicious?
Lucinda Eravyn
 player, 168 posts
 Elf
 Alchemist
Tue 8 Jul 2014
at 18:55
Re: The High road from Freeport
She smiles as she took the potion back. She made a person happy today! Her parents or one of the clerks had always given the item she made out, so she didn't get to see the direct results of her potion sales very often. Now that she thought about it, most of the time the only person who drank her potions was Lucinda herself. Or at least she thought so. Potions did disappear from her lab every once in a while...maybe they went to the shop upstairs? She knew about what happened to the commissioned orders, but what about the general stock? She tapped her chin in deep thought over the matter. Then she clapped her hands quietly and dug through her bag for a moment to pull out a vial. "R-right...every morning and night..." She sipped the elixir again, particularly observant viewers might recognize it as the one she used last night.
Lalita Chandra
 player, 109 posts
 Beast-Kin
 Caster
Tue 8 Jul 2014
at 19:26
Re: The High road from Freeport
Okay, that's it. Lalita was officially bored. She'll admit, the dreams were pretty fun to ponder aboat; and she supposed the abrupt messenger was a bit mysterious. However, now that those were done and over with, they were literally just doing notfin but sitting around. Which in all honesty, didn't sit well with the fish-kin. Nope! Naut at all.

Finished with her breakfast, the girl stood up from where she sat and going over to Apollo jumped onto the horses back. Adrenaline pumping through her veins. Yeah, she was ready. Ready to get this show on the road. "We're wasting daylight." She declared as she looked down at her comrades, hoping for their agreement. "Let's go guppies~ This adventure ain't gonna start itshell! Glub."

This message was last edited by the player at 19:41, Tue 08 July 2014.

Jerischo Elsinoir Addis
 player, 37 posts
 Human
 Bard
Wed 9 Jul 2014
at 00:55
Re: The High road from Freeport
Jerischo had been busying himself over the fire and considering his party member's words. After the excitement of the messenger passed, he spoke up. "Well since I have yet to reveal what the old man said to me... I offer these words to you all...

To journeys end the dreams will take
and grant the heroes thirst to slake
beware the whispers in the dark
stay true the path and seek the spark
a fate committed years ago
a battle of great foes
the lives of all are in great peril
as darkness ever grows


He stood up and straightened his shirt. Looking over at Lalita, who was raring to go, he said "Perhaps young fishy is right, we are indeed wasting daylight." He collected the cooking utensils from around the fire and prepared to mount his horse...


OOC: This was posted by the GM

This message was last updated by the GM at 00:55, Wed 09 July 2014.

Jada
 player, 70 posts
 Beast-Kin
 Monk
Wed 9 Jul 2014
at 00:38
Re: The High road from Freeport
Hearing the lady's pieces, Jada closed his eyes again and concentrated. "Hmm.." He mumbled as he thought about the clues before him. Fortunately studying prophecies and their twisted meanings had been part of his studies. He cleared his mind and brought forth his memory of a map of Linness. It had been years since being forced to study it, but he could still recall the details. Tallest peak, northward to the bent arm, water springing.. highest peaking, winding peak lost to darkness..

As the other distracted themselves with calling out the messenger, Jada sat quietly and focused. After several more moments, he opened his eyes. "I was wrong. The peak lost to darkness is Widow's Peak. The darkness it speaks of is the dark mages that inhabited it after the rending. It is our first destination where we will likely meet fierce resistance, via the 'cold steel'. After that we need to go north to where the mountain range turn westward. The river's source is there. We can follow it to the second destination.. Although I am not yet sure why there is two. Perhaps the map it speaks of is a literal map, or maybe it is a truth that will burn away the lies of our known history and break our will to stop the darkness. I am not sure, but finding a holy alter on Widow's Peak seems fairly clear."
Jerischo Elsinoir Addis
 player, 39 posts
 Human
 Bard
Wed 9 Jul 2014
at 03:43
Re: The High road from Freeport
The Bard smiled at the others, his true thoughts inscrutable.  Fighting?  On a mountain?  Did they have ANY idea how bad that sounded? The thin roads and the possibility of landslides and the possibility of bandits. . .and they could make up time and maybe catch him and-  his eyes betrayed nothing as he spoke up.  He chuckled as he watched the swordswoman try to down the potion, he heard that. . .Volkove.  Okay, this had gone on long enough.  He was NOT putting this off anymore.

"Mountain battles?  Well, that CERTAINLY sounds like a wondrous idea, especially at night, and if we don't know the way."  He stirred the pot more, waiting for a moment before continuing.  "In fact, I think it was on a mountain when I last saw that man. . .that. . .Volkove I think his name was."  He shuddered only slightly, as if the memory brought him chills;  an easy act, as it did.
Lalita Chandra
 player, 114 posts
 Beast-Kin
 Caster
Wed 9 Jul 2014
at 12:09
Re: The High road from Freeport
The gills eye's widened as she listened to Jerischo. Did he just say, that he had seen otets? She slid off of Apollo's back and quickly walking up to the man asked, "What mountain? Where was it you last saw him?"

Lalita codn't believe- this was it! The news she had been praying for. Someone had actually seen her otets, which could only mean that he was alive. "Oh thank the cods..." The fish kin thought relieved. He was safe, just the thought of that alone was enough to make the girl filled with joy. She had to know. Where was he now? What was he doing? She needed to find him.

This message was last edited by the player at 17:27, Wed 09 July 2014.

Lucinda Eravyn
 player, 177 posts
 Elf
 Alchemist
Wed 9 Jul 2014
at 21:47
Re: The High road from Freeport
Lucinda taps her chin for a moment and begins muttering to herself, obviously lost deep in thought. The Widow's Peak? The Herrin mountains? Although geography wasn't exactly her strong suit, Lucinda had definitely heard of that place. She muttered to herself a little, working through her thoughts quite softly. "Herrin mountains...widow's peaks...why are those so familiar...was it in that story about Rorona? No...was it the mountain Totori climbed to save her friend? No...I'm on the wrong path....Widow's Peak sound's like Willow's Meat sounds like Witnow's Peat sounds like..." Her eyes suddenly went wide with realization as she seemed very excited. "Astrid's Seed! A-and Chimera Root! Oh, and there may even be darkstone! A-and terranite! Ooh! This is going to be fun!" she said sounding more cheerful than timid for once. She had only seen those ingredients! They were really super rare, so her parents had always said that she couldn't use the very few they had. She was sure she could create something really interesting should she be able to get her hands on any of them! Let alone all three! Maybe this whole adventuring in the mountains thing wouldn't be so bad!
Lynessa Crescent
 player, 95 posts
 Human
 Fighter
Thu 10 Jul 2014
at 00:35
Re: The High road from Freeport
Lynessa listened to Jada as she tried to rinse out the taste of Lucinda's potion with a mouthful of water from her skin. Going over what she remembered of the shared poems, she had to admit that the beast-kin's interpretation seemed good. The thought made her a little bitter, that something as feral as Jada could out-reason her. A small part of her was ashamed at this reaction, and was perhaps the reason why she didn't argue with him for argument's sake.

She pushed herself to her feet. “An ambush in the dark in unfamiliar territory would be a bad situation whether you were in the mountains or the open plain,” she responded to Jeri. “In any case, we should get moving soon. South will take us back to Freeport, East and West to the ocean, so North towards the Herrin Mountains seems like our only option at this point anyway.” Like Lalita, she was ready to go. She felt full of energy. Maybe because of the breakfast? Or the extra sleep she'd gotten? Lucinda seemed excited too. She couldn't help but hope the elven girl found some of the plants or... whatever had her so excited... and had some time to harvest them.
Devi McCain
 player, 62 posts
 Human
 Caster
Thu 10 Jul 2014
at 14:55
Re: The High road from Freeport
Devi nodded as Jada spoke. "Who knows what new insights we'll gain on the road, or when we reach our first destination. We can discuss it on the road - there'll likely be little else to do." With the rider gone, she had turned her mind towards the poems again. She took out her parchment and pen and made a few preliminary notes as the others busied themselves around the camp - Devi was used to this life and didn't need a lot of time to pack. She jotted down what she could remember of the poems and linked them to each person. There'd be time to correct them later.

When she was done, she started readying her horse. She was more than ready to move again. She mounted her horse and waited for the others to finish their business.
Jerischo Elsinoir Addis
 player, 41 posts
 Human
 Bard
Fri 11 Jul 2014
at 00:28
Re: The High road from Freeport
The Bard too suddenly was in a hurry, but not for the same reasons as the others.  Where Lynessa was eager to move on, Jada was his usual phlegmatic self, and Lalita was suddenly eager to chatter with him, he found himself in a hurry to do just the opposite;  get the shell away from the Fish-girl.  Oh, he remembered the name Volkove alright.  He remembered it too well, far too well indeed.  And he'd gotten the confirmation that he wanted from the girl.  So his words were airy, breezy as his mind supposedly was, as he hurriedly saddled up.

"Volkove?  Oh gods, what mountain. . .you know, Lalita, I honestly forget.  It was about three months ago, and I was in such a hurry."  Just like he was now.  The girl didn't know what she was getting herself into.  Better to play dumb.
Lalita Chandra
 player, 120 posts
 Beast-Kin
 Caster
Fri 11 Jul 2014
at 00:55
Re: The High road from Freeport
"O-oh..." Lalita stuttered, slightly disappointed. She stood silent for a while, thinking over what the bard had said. So he saw him three months ago? Well, thats nice, but she was hoping Jerischo might have seen otets a little more recently. And he didn't seem to remember which mountain either, though she didn't completely believe him there.

The fish-kin let out a small sigh. How frustrating. But some news was better than none, at least she knew he was still out there or, at least she hoped so. She nodded her head. "Sanks Jerischo. Glub." She replied at last. Lalita turned from the bard and jumping back onto Apollo's back, looked solemnly down at the ground. "L-lets go, every guppy. Glub.."
Jada
 player, 76 posts
 Beast-Kin
 Monk
Fri 11 Jul 2014
at 03:40
Re: The High road from Freeport
In reply to Jerischo Elsinoir Addis (msg # 47):

A frown pulled at Jada's neutral expression, but he kept his calm. Is the possibility of future battles surprising? What did he think this journey would entail? Weeks of traveling then chanting a few prayers perhaps? No, the forces of darkness throughout the histories have never made things easy. I am sure this darkness will be no different. "Although the night does not hinder me as much, I too would like to avoid fighting after dusk. Wandering into ambush at night could be dangerous. Another good reason to rest at nightfall.." He said, responding to Jerischo's words.

He paused to listen to the elf's mutterings, but couldn't make sense of it, so he continued voicing his thoughts. "Once we reach Tiro, it might be worth while to search for a guide who knows the mountain. We will have to see how reliable the paths are."

He was relieved when Lalita and Devi moved to their mounts. He had been waiting to depart and now that wait was over. While he was gathering Blanche's reigns, he looked over when the bard mentioned a man sharing Lalita's last name. A family member perhaps? A mountain seems like an odd place for a fish-kin. Heh, about as odd as finding a beast-kin in a monastery I suppose.

This message was last edited by the player at 13:20, Fri 11 July 2014.