One night, in a world where a game known as Dungeons and Dragons has gained both much popularity and equally as much prejudice, one abyssmally dark and stormy night it so happened that some friends had just finished up their 'via Instant Message' D&D session whilst through the windows came the roaring peals of-.
Well, in actuality it was a relatively peaceful evening, even in the coastal suburb where lived Galen, apart from the group having moved away from his friends a few years back. They complete their own rituals of returning dice to their altars where the consistantly high-rolling are all but worshipped, and restoring stacks of books to their former organization, promising to speak to each other again the next day. However, on this night, not an abnormal specimen of nights, they experience the same set of unusual dreams simultaneously, unknown to each other.
Within the first dream comes the vaguely remembered experience of looking into a world, not unlike our own, though strange and beautiful in ways not immediately comprehesible. Throughout the duration of this dream the members so selected to view it carry away with them the inexplicable sensation of being a spectator, peering into this world without being a part of it. This dream leaves little to no memory in the minds of the slumbering viewers.
After the peace of the first, the second is that of sudden horror, rapidly descending toward a perceived surface whereupon the imagination has no trouble filling in the potential consequences of making contact. Though the sensed surface is never struck, as out of darkness and into light they were launched as their reflexes shook them awake.
But they were not awake, as the standard definition goes. The third dream is the strongest in the memory. In this dream it is first realized that there were others who shared these experiences, as they stand assembled. Bathed in a world of light, there is the sound of two voices, apparantly addressing the assembled friends. A female voice, strong but sweet, remnicient of joyous moments and the ecstacy of life. The male voice is deep but smooth, and influences thoughts of peace and wholeness. Sometimes it is the one voice or the other that is heard, and sometimes both overlap and harmonize into one. They said:
"You have proven yourselves champions at heart. When our darkest hour arose, a prophecy was made that no man nor woman born under our care could defeat the evil that has crossed us. We send you our plea to aid us. Do not worry, for we do not intend to unfairly endanger you, you will go with our protection to a temple prepared for your arrival where you will find our trusted servants are waiting to equip you with the tools and knowledge you will need against the evil you must face.
"You are now approaching the completion of your journey, prepare yourselves to--"
Suddenly you recieve a sharp shock, like a cold shower or the sensation of sticking your fingers into a socket. It is as if a spike had been driven into your mind. This violent assault leaves you with a black mark upon your memory.
The final dream is of floating, asleep, gently downstream in a small boat over a river of mists. Within the dream they come to realize that they are again asleep, dreaming of their own slumber. As all sensation of the dreams regresses back to whatever realm they come from, the friends begin to awake, though not in their own beds. In the first moments of arrising, the content of the dreams is lost to a hazy part of their minds, though the sight of the strange room and that of each other evokes a tenuous link to return the fleeting memories, in order to better explain their curious predicament.
They found themselves in a brightly lit room, the roof, walls, and floor made of stonework. They open their eyes to see four torches in the corners of your eyes on the walls. With confusion, each of the six that arrived sit up, discovering one another's presence. Movement from behind causes all to twist themselves about to see what was the source of motion. Six small wooden boats, just big enough each for a person to lay in. They drift away, seemingly on a suface of mist alone. The mists vanish, leaving behind a very wide set of closed stone double doors, adorned with carvings of a man and a woman each reaching to the other sideways, as their bodies face forward. Their fingertips join at the split between the doors that is now barely visible; Cradled in their arms is a circular seal emblem of some sort. This final occurance is the strongest for pulling in the memory of the dreams, and perhaps leads to the belief in some that the dreams are not yet ended.
Note that only five characters: Owen, Ian, Galen, Ben,and Jeremy are in the stone room. Raymond happens to start elsewhere, which will be included in a future update.
Posted on 2008-05-24 at 03:00:17.
Edited on 2010-02-10 at 20:00:06 by Sibelius Eos Owm
Ray slowly came to the realization that he was awakening in a sitting position. His mind is covered in a thick blanket of indistiction. As though a blinding fog had obscured his connection with the lighthouse of coherent thoughts. The ground beneath him was damp and cool, if not outright cold. Raymond raised his head and opened his eyes as his hands clenched he could feel that it was dewed grass beneath his fingertips.
With his eyes he confirmed a world not much larger than the one that his enshrouded mind had provided. All shapes became indistinct beyond a stone's throw distance of fog. The grass, depite the obvious presence of sufficient water, was a flat dead yellow as far as he could determine. The cold presence behind his back, that which held him in this sleepsitting pose, was not yet recognized, not that this mysterious plane held much for the understanding.
He shifted to stand, working out the aches of his peculiar choice of location to slumber. When Ray gradually found his feet stable beneath him, he decided to risk all the morning's acheivements by shaking his head, to banish the inhibiting fog to his throughts. His long, curly brown hair flung side to side to no avail however; perhaps now would be an opportune moment to look behind himself.
There stood a silent sentinal of stone, a single obelisk nearly twice his own height of grey stone flecked with black and white. Written upon its broad face against which Ray had previously awoken was an inscription in english. With sometime the words began to follow a sensible order within his sluggish mind.
Here lingers the spirits of those whose willful inaction sentenced their brothers and sisters to death. The Evil that has infected these grounds allows no rest to the dead and so condemned do they rise as in life. Such a place has become a place where the burdens of the virtuous may be relieved. Speak your story to the lingering souls and they will allow your misfortune to be as tears cast to the ocean.
As Raymond reads the obelisk, he begins to realize that the one thing of all his life that can be accessed from his memory that phrase that represents his being; His name.
Behind him he could feel a presence occur. Perhaps it was a cold chill in his spine or some other sensation, but he could feel something unnatural waiting for him should he turn again.
Sorry I didn't get to us in the cavern-thing-room which you all know as a temple. I ask that if anyone at any point believe they recognise the situation that Ray has found himself in, that you keep it to yourselves. Well now that I only have exams, I am expected to work for parents in yard whenever I would otherwise be enjoying myself. I guess it's not so bad but that means no post until tonight at the earliest.
Posted on 2008-06-12 at 19:01:37.
Edited on 2008-06-22 at 15:40:40 by Sibelius Eos Owm
From the charcoal black hood to the inky tails of the spectral cloak there was no doubt. Like liquid shadow the massive garment hung silent, disembodied. It's empty sleeves fell to its sides with thin, almost skeletal black hands emerging from the ends. The dark being's eyes stared unblinking and resembling a pair of malicious embers of enflamed coal. There was no doubt what this creature that had silently approached from nothing was, for it was one of Ray's favourite creatures in the Monster Manuel; it was a Wraith.
Raymond had to lean his head back to look up into the hood that towered above him, suspended off the ground. It remained motionless save for the ethereal breeze that rippled its body ever so slightly. In this manner the two remained frozen, eyes locked until the Wraith spoke in a dry, hushed voice, like a dead wind.
"Tell us," it said airily, "tell us what ails you."
The Cave-Dwellers at long last find the attention they demand.
As the five subterrainian adventurers-impromptu rise from the less than soft stone floor of the room they are in, they see that the wall opposite the one where they are lined up against contains a single door in the middle. The room is a total of about 25-30 ft long and about 20 ft wide, they lying along the long side. The roof walls and floor are cast in a light grey stone and the roof lies a short 7 ft off the ground, high enough for everyone to move about comfortably. Lest your wise and powerful DM *cough* dictates otherwise, all rooms you encounter appear as thus.
Owen was twisting his torso to get the stiffness out of the small of his back when his hand set upon something with a smooth cover that vaguely triggered a memory of having a pillow like object. With a quick glance he confirmed that Galen who sat immediately beside him had already found and picked up a similar book. Without another thought Owen abandoned his stretching to pick up the near-text book sized volume that lay innocuously behind him. It had a plain brown leather cover and though he didn't acknowledge the peculiarity, many leaves of paper.
He crossed his legs and sat up against the wall that was a door and opened it, axiously wanting to know exactly what lay inside. What did lay inside was pretty well exactly what he expected, despite the impossibility of the idea and the foreigness of the situation. Within were directions for meditation upon, preparation of, and utilization of magic. Magic! Owen's heart leapt for a second at the possibility. He glanced aside to Galen who was intently and thouroughly reading his own. He looked to the others, his brother Ian, his other friend Ben, and his brother's friend Jeremy.
As Ben will probably very soon discover, the single remaining usable door is unlocked, albeit on slightly rusted hinges. The four torches are long, thin pieces of wood that can be removed from their holders easily, should anybody turn to them. The new wizards discover that they are ready and able to cast magic, if they would so dare to say the incantation for one of the spells that lie in their memory as if implanted.
Lastly, everyone finds that they feel better than normal. Stronger, quicker, more cunning, and perhaps a bit more courageous for it all. Like waking up on a beautiful day, wanting to do nothing more than run around and enjoy. Though as for that, running around this room might be taken as an indicator for insanity, so please don't try.
Posted on 2008-06-13 at 15:55:13.
Edited on 2008-06-13 at 22:13:06 by Sibelius Eos Owm
How the hell did I get here? Last time I checked I was sleeping in a nice soft bed... not on stone. Is this a dream?
He then moved over to Ian and pinched him while he was still in a daze. Ben sighed as Ian flinched in reaction.
Nope, not a dream.
Ben quickly pulled a torch off the wall and continued to proceed through the exit in a need to get out and explore their location.
"Anyone that feels like exploring with me, is free to follow," he tells them, exiting the room.
As Ian lies there on the floor, opens his eyes feeling the hard cold stone on his back and growns. He sits up in wonder of where he is, in doing so gets lost in thought.
Ben then moved over to Ian and pinched him while he was still in a daze. He sighed as Ian flinched in reaction.
"What did you do that for?" Ian whines, "that hurt, but it solved the question of this being a dream."
"Anyone that feels like exploring with me, is free to follow," he tells them, exiting the room.
Ian gets up quicky and snaches a torch, and hastily follows Ben out.
Posted on 2008-06-13 at 22:26:02.
Edited on 2008-06-17 at 03:14:32 by Okron
The book was the first thing that draws in Galen's attention. Everything else almost doesn't matter at this point in time, there is only him, and the book. However, there is also another feeling, although it isn't new. Inconvenience? That is one way to put it. An inconvenience that he had been trying to solve for years, that hadn't been solved just from this abrupt change of setting. Oh well, if this book is what it appears to be, it would give a different path anyway. Galen sits on the ground, cross-legged, with the book open on his lap.
Within these pages is directions to wield power. Galen thinks as he methodically reads every page in his book.
Galen stops for a moment, and closes his eyes. With power comes responsibility. The responsibility to use it properly, and not abuse it. The Light chooses to use it to strike the Darkness, and likewise the Darkness will attack the Light. That is the Eternal War, but the true path is in the Twilight. I know this... do I accept it?
Inside, Galen smiles, Yes. I had made this commitment before, and I will make it here too. Even if the people here are indeed ready for this power, I won't merely give it to them. I will be a gatekeeper, and if by Destiny they are ready, then Destiny will provide it, given time.
The interconnections between the natural and the supernatural are outlined in the book. How to use one to alter the other, and yet, Galen can't help but notice small things that do not truly make sense. Some aspects seem slightly redundant, but it would be wise to still make the notions anyway, unless there is a clear way around it.
The requirement of material items? Galen wonders, That would make sense, if the material was actually used, but for these relatively simple spells, it seems to only provide more of a focus to concentrate one's thought on. If I'm right, I should be able to do without them, at least for these spells.
Galen tentatively reaches outwards with his right hand, feeling the unseen and unfelt waves of the omnipresent forces that give magic its form. Satisfied with just feeling their existance for now, Galen withdraws his hand without doing anything, nods once to himself, and rises to follow the others, clasping the book shut and holding it as if it were just one of his many school textbooks.
Posted on 2008-06-14 at 05:18:28.
Edited on 2008-06-14 at 05:20:50 by Reralae
Magic is nice, be we're on a tight schedule with Ben in the lead
The release of the door, made of metal apparently, and well sealed, caused a change in air pressure that brought a slight breeze in through the crack, upsetting small amounts of dust.
"Anyone that feels like exploring with me, is free to follow," Ben tells them, exiting the room.
Owen noticed the opening of the door but, as his brother knew quite well, once taken by a book, outside distractions became another world of which he was not a member. He didn't want to go anywhere at the moment, but urgency pricked at the back of his neck. When Ben had told the people in the room to either explore or stay, he had made up his mind and re-entered the plane of common existence. Owen stood up quickly, the tallest in the room by a few inches, and joined Ben at the front. He would let the others take torches.
"Come on, we should all go," he said to those who were still picking themselves up, reading, or gathering flame. A sudden thought crossed his mind and he dove into his pocket to find his watch, but came up empty. Suddenly alarmed he began to wonder what else had not followed him. The very fact that he could see registered now, he definitely had his glasses on. His feet, as he soon realized applied to everyone, were clad not in modern runners but leather shoes.
Ben threw the door all the way open while Owen quested for his pocket lint, and was rewarded with a semi-dark corridor that smelled of cool, stale air with earthy scents mixed with something unpleasant but unidentifiable. The torchlight reveiled that this hall too had a head-room only roof, though was fairly wide. It stretched into dark unknown, with the wall of a corner just visible once the eyes adjusted to the dark.
Owen met his eyes for a breif second, holding aloft the quill he had discovered in place of his pen, his eyebrow raised. He tucked it into the inside cover of his spellbook and spoke up. "Before we do anything, I want to make sure one last time that we aren't all crazy, or dreaming, or something like that." He holds his spellbook before him in one hand, closed. The other hand is raised slightly above it. Feeling absolutely foolish at this point, he says "If this works, we've all gone off the deep end."
He speaks an incomprehensible word and points to the cover, with the image held in his mind. The cover of the book suddenly glows with a design on it, that of a large circle, contained within a long thin flower that forms a question mark shape as it dips from the weight of its head. A single leaf protrudes from the back of the curve, and a line is drawn unimaginatively for the earth beneath.
As soon as the glow fades, the emblem vanishes completely into the face of the book.
"Holy . . ." Owen trails off, watching the magic inscription fade as he willed it to do so. He looked up to the people who may or may not have gather around.
Don't worry, not discluding you Aardvark, I just wanted to keep enough meat set aside for the hounds to enjoy. I am not unsympathetic.
Also, aforementioned hounds inclusive, things will generally go as they did the first time. Obviously battles will roll different, and we do not have Kaed with us, but stupid or wise decisions will run the same course, example: me as the wizard standing in the front with the fighter. Let's see if we can't completely mess things up again!
Posted on 2008-06-14 at 06:15:06.
Edited on 2008-06-14 at 06:20:48 by Sibelius Eos Owm
"Come on, we should all go,"
"The corridor isn't going anywhere," Galen murmurs quietly while still reading.
Realizing that might have been too soft, as his voice usually is, Galen speaks up again, "We're in no hurry that I can tell, and I have one more thing I want to check."
Galen closes his eyes. There is a slim possibility that this is actually a dream, and if it is indeed a dream, then he could use that. Galen tests the borders of his consciousness, but finds they are not hazy, as they would usually be in sleep. Galen nods, so this is real. Or at the very least, not a dream.
Owen too checks this, but in a different way, by actually testing this world's magic. Galen nods at the result. He expected as much, considering that the directions in his book had only verified and extended on his own theories about magic.
"Holy . . ."
"Krutz?" Galen offers, prefering even mundane words over colloquial swears and languange.
In the back of his mind, Galen thinks ahead. There is an uncanny resemblance between the spells in his book and those in the PHB, as well as the Spell Compendium. If this world indeed followed the outlines of D&D, then that would imply that his magic would be severely limited. Galen shrugs; that actually didn't matter so much, because if this is true, then almost the only spell he truly wants is one he'll get soon enough, provided he uses the knowledge in his spellbook to provide hints and the infrastructure to 'discover' it.
Grabbing another torch, Galen follows the others, definitely not in the front. When walking in a group, Galen seldom walks in the front, and so too even here. However, Galen can't help but be curious as to exactly what Owen is doing in the front.
Posted on 2008-06-14 at 17:46:03.
Edited on 2008-06-17 at 06:22:58 by Reralae
I am not to sure what I should do at the moment. A wraith has confronted me, but instead of attacking it has gone to communicate with me. I think over the question for a moment, also not being able to get around the idea that it could suck the life out of me with a simple touch. I respond with a slight stutter from fear:
"I am lost, confused, and without any memory of my past..." I prepare myself for the worst. And am almost ready to run, I do not wish to join the living dead, nor do I really wish to die at this time either. but of the two options, the latter would be preferable, and hopefully it would come quickly...
Didn't I get killed by that in the last adventure?
Raymond stood before the towering image of death, wondering about the strange request made by it. Whatever force caused it to not strike and kill him immediately, he was thankful for. His mouth begins to form a response to the Wraith, though it takes a second to get his vocal chords to obey his timorous command.
"I am lost, confused, and without any memory of my past . . ." His voice sounds terribly loud to his ears in the silence of this place. It seemed to echo forever against the solid walls of silence and fog. Ray stood ready to become the swift hare to live another day should the Wraith proved yet hostile.
The Wraith responded in the same spectral voice, "Yes, tell us more, tell us your ails." It seemed to want Raymond to continue, a thought that may have frightened him if not he found more inside his memory. Within his mind, a single tenuous root began to tie his consciousness back to his mind and memory, like a golden thread through ages of fog. With a little effort, he found he was beginning to remember more.
This personal victory may or may not yet prove to be of assistance though, for another apparition had arisen. Beginning from a faintly glowing spot on the grass to Raymondís right, it rose from within the earth to hover in the air. It appeared human but for the translucence and luminosity of its body, wearing a habit or robe of some kind. Around its neck there appeared to be a collar with a short length of chain that faded past a foot in length and pointed toward the obelisk. Within his sightless and ghostly eyes you seem to feel a deep, heavy regret, that is mirrored in every part of the land.
Posted on 2008-06-15 at 15:30:34.
Edited on 2008-06-17 at 03:27:31 by Sibelius Eos Owm
perhaps it was the fact that inside myself, I am fascinated by the wraith: its style, appearance, and the fact that it had not done anything to harm me. But with the appearance of another specter I go into a panic. I turn tail and flee from the two creatures to the best of my abilities.
Eyes look like embers from the pits of hell? There's a Visine for that.
Operating with neither memory nor familiar landscape, Raymond was held in a partial state of trance by the impressive and apparantly non-hostile Wraith before him. It was a peculiar stand off that was, however, not to last long. The introduction of the Spectre was one too many unliving products of a horrible evil being tied to a spirit.
Directly before him and to his right lay beings containing within their merest touch, the ability to drain an individual so ill-fortuned of every iota of life. The alternately solid obstacle of the obelisk directly behind him seemed to fare no fairer a choice, leaving a single obvious route. This last path lead most immediately away from the Spectre, an ideal avenue as the intentions of the newly arrived spirit were unknown.
Upon reaching this decision, no further hesitation inhibited Ray's escape, as he elected to put as much dead grass between the monklike Spectre and himself. However near or far his conversation with the Wraith may have placed him to rediscovering the remainder of his identity, he knew not, he cared not. Not daring to look back before a substantial distance had been travelled, he ran on with naught in sight but lifeless grass and thick blanketing fog. To his left he began to realize that he could hear the sounds of a large body of water, barely lapping at the shore. Perhaps he was too preoccupied with the dead to notice the sound before, but it seemed to indicate that a significant distance lay vertically between the water level and his current altitude.
Ahead he found that the fog had begun to disappate from his point of view, though that was not a matter by comparison to the sight he beheld as the extent of his vision increased. Ray could see that there was indeed a cliff drop to his left, and before him lay a small hill of an outcropping. Between the fenced in graveyard and the dead, blackened tree that stood above it, the sight he saw was not one to be appreciated. Even outside of the covering of fog, the world was hardly less woeful, under bleakly overcast skies.
Finally Raymond dared a glance over his shoulder, finding to his dismay that the distance he had thought to have covered brought him barely a hundred feet away from the obelisk. Surely he had been running for three times as far as that! Nevertheless, though shrouded in fog, the form of the carving was still clearly visible, though the two sentinal spirits were not to be seen.
Returning his gaze to the graveyard and accompanying tree, he noticed a person that he had not seen before, if they had even been there. Luminous and translucent as the spectre before, this girl sat weightlessly in the branches of the dead tree. The hood of her habit was down, revealling long translucent hair down her back. As he looked at her, she turned her head to gaze upon you with hauntingly sightless eyes. She seemed to stand in the air as she began to turn her body while drifting casually through the branch.
"Tell us," she said simply in an absent, hollow voice, so different from that of the Wraith.
Ahead lay the graveyard, currently unpopulated for the record. The tree's canopy forms an umbrella above the sea-facing near section of the graveyard and stetches just out over the cliff, where the spectre girl is standing.
Posted on 2008-06-17 at 05:18:53.
Edited on 2008-06-17 at 15:08:34 by Sibelius Eos Owm
Had I not just woken up, my mind would have been full of questions; a few being how I got here, where is here and why is Owen walking around with a glowing book? However I had just woken up and these questions didn't cross my mind. The only thought I had was of how hard and uncomfortable the stone floor was to sleep on. Mind you, it was very uncomfortable. Thats when it hit me. I didn't remember going to sleep on a hard stone floor. In fact, I didn't recognize anything around me. When I looked around me I noticed four people in the room. As my eyes adjusted I began to recognize them.
"Ian, Owen, Ben?" I pause for a second trying to recall who the last was, "Galen?"
I wanted to ask what they were doing but as they were now leaving the room I had to catch up with them first. As I hurry to meet up with them the questions finally come to me, "What is this place? How did we get here?"
Trying to comprehend whats just happened I make an attempt to piece it together. "Have we been kidnapped?" I ask, finally waiting for an answer.