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You are here: Home --> Forum Home --> Rules-based RPGs --> Dungeons and Dragons --> Underdark
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    Messages in Underdark
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JenthLiadon
Regular Visitor
Karma: 5/2
58 Posts


Underdark

Welcome to Shadowdale and its festival for adventurers and heroes. Being over looked by a mountain in the shape of a skull Shadowdale has no high walls or city gates. In fact if it wasn’t for the special compass that Elminster himself personally sent you, you might have missed the town entirely. But this is a festival for adventurers and heroes and adventurers and heroes should be present, so Elminster sent a guide. As you look around many of the legendary heroes wander this festival. Elminster himself is playing as the host and of course Shadowdale’s leader Storm Silverhand is greeting adventurers as they pop out of the forest. She is also leading a group of talented bards in playing some very lively music and with drinks there is dancing. As night befalls the city Elminster directs the patrons’ attention toward the sky as fireworks explode relighting the night sky. Also providing light are some curious fireflies flitting about, but any attempts to catch the fireflies find the attempt empty handed and the fly just out of reach. As the fireworks draw to an end sheets are spread about the dance square. As their laid out the sheets rise from their location and take the form of tables. Other residents of Shadowdale sent chairs before the table-like sheets and yet others lay out delectable meals. As soon as everyone is seated Elminster rises with glass in hand.

“A toast to the adventurers who strive to keep our Faerun safe. A toast and a challenge! As a part of the festivities we have arranged for a quest to be taken by any brave enough to try. The quest is quite simply to map the Underdark. I have laid out a series of Portals that will take each of you to a different part of the Upperdark. Whichsoever group makes it back here alive with a comprehensive map of the entire Underdark will be named amongst the greatest of Heroes and will receive a Dragon’s hoard worth of treasures setting them up quite possibly for the rest of their life. So if you would like to take part in this quest step through this portal. Worry not about grouping as your group will be selected from those that enter the portal and any that are left over will be safely returned here.” Elminster points and taking shape before all is a shimmering portal. “Be not afraid for supplies upon entering this portal you will find that your packs have been filled with supplies to last a month, after that it is apart of the adventure to supply yourselves right?”

The challenge delivered Elminster sits back and begins to consume his portion of dinner. As dinner draws to a near groups of adventurers enter the portal while others deliberately look away.


Posted on 2007-12-23 at 04:07:58.

Loki
TRSG 2.0
Karma: 113/94
1606 Posts


At the feast

Although I have already eaten you never know where your next or even where your last meal will come from in the mercenary trade so I ate up greatly while mulling over the prospect of fame and 'a dragons hoard of gold'.

'... I suppose that I could always do with some better armour but being famous might attract too much attention, after all if my tribe knew they would definitely hunt me down...' he thought to himself.
'...the underdark isn't a nice place, especially for my race, I'm a slave race as far as the drow and their allies are concerned and I've already had to flee for my life once and once is enough...' and his train of thought continued along that line until he settled on the idea that if he was with others he would be safer, and that there is no one he would rather enter the underdark with then his old acquaintance, Dusk.

Settling on that knowledge but aware that he might not end up with him by his side he finished his meal, decided that Dusk can't be far away and went off in search of him with the idea of offering the job with the reward at the end of immense fame and a hoard of treasure to big to count. And if he needed payment there and then, an extra incentive of just was feeling exceptional greedy would offer 10pp of his own money.


Posted on 2007-12-23 at 13:52:28.
Edited on 2007-12-23 at 13:53:42 by Loki

Ginafae
Kool Killer Kitty
Karma: 64/6
1685 Posts


Who better to explore the dark than a drow?

“You want to be rid of me?”

The words were more of an accusation than a question, but the women that they were sounded towards did not seem to notice. She merely continued the fluid movements of the sword in her hand until the silver of the blade, the silvery locks of her hair and the glistening contours of her body became one. The graceful dance continued until all her breath was spent and her body could take no more.

“And what makes you think that, my Sister?” she replied at last in a breathless whisper.

“You would send me away from my family…to live among the rivvilse….”

“And would that be so bad?” the woman interrupted, casting her dark eyes accusingly at the source of the voice.

“I…no…no, it wouldn’t. And if the humans would accept our kind, I would gladly live among them. But they fear us Qilué and would likely kill us out of blind panic. Why do you send me among them?”

“Because to embrace your future, you must accept your past. Remember this Aelistae.”

‘To embrace your future, you must accept your past,’
a voice within Aelistae’s head echoed. It had taken her several weeks of travelling and only now did she understand the meaning and the wisdom of those words.

She circled at the edge of the gathering, her pale lilac eyes shining dimly beneath a cowl that was pulled low over her features. The countless men and women that were partaking of a feast drew her eyes. It seemed as if a representative of all the races of the surface world were present – humans from various kingdoms, all of the subraces of the Tel’Quess, dour dwarves, flighty gnomes, and even a dog-snouted creature she did not recognize. What was more amazing to her eyes was the way they acted towards one another. Haughty-looking elves would break bread with the lowliest creatures, human princes would serve wine to their fellow diners, and all shared their laughter with one another. Part of her wanted to join them, yearned for their company, but she knew she could not.

“They would never accept me,” she whispered sadly in the tongue of the Ilythiiri – the language of the drow. So she walked at the periphery of the gathering, as an unwelcome guest at a party.

“And yet at least I am not the monster they would think me to be.” Aelistae removed the cowl that concealed her face and that imposed some semblance of order on the otherwise chaotic bangs of her stark white hair. As a reflex she squinted her eyes as the sun attacked her fine ebony features, remembering the searing pain that fiery ball in the sky had caused her when she had first glimpsed it. But a moment later she opened them again and smiled, as the blinding shafts of sunlight turned to become a warm caress.

“Not a monster at all.”

The loud voice reverberated around the gathering once more. It belonged to a human dressed in fine robes, that Aelistae knew was the fabled wizard Elminster, and he called for adventurers to answer his challenge to explore and map a region of the Underdark. For him it was no doubt a clever game to be rewarded with some trinkets he had collected in the course of his long life. For Aelistae it was something more.

It was part of a journey she had to take.

“I will answer your challenge.” Aelistae finally stepped forth into the midst of the gathering and raised her voice above the clamour of others.

“My name is Aelistae D’Vrann, I can assure you I mean no harm to any of you” she added in her heavily accented Common and crossed her arms diagonally across her chest in a gesture of peace.

The only answer she got from the hush that settled around her was one armoured man who stammered “She’s a Drow…a…a…creature of darkness!”.

“I am Drow. But I am not what you think. Anyway, who better to explore the dark than someone who was born in its depths?” she replied calmly, and just as calmly stepped into the portal.


OOC: I had a lot of fun on this intro post. I look forward to reading all of yours.


Posted on 2007-12-25 at 19:58:25.

Kaelyn
Dragon Fodder
Karma: 80/19
2264 Posts


ello

It had been quite some time since Dusk had left the security of the darkness which swept through the countless miles of underground tunnels, caverns and other passageways of the Underdark. The bright light of the surface world flooded over Dusk, and he momentarily cowered beneath the folds of his deep robes, hiding from the sun until his eyes grew accustomed to such invasive lighting. The scout and guide to the Underdark Excavation Consortium had ventured surface bound numerous times before; but each time only served to remind him how he preferred the darkened comforts of home.

Home…it was a relatively loose term for Dusk, since he never settled anywhere for an extended period of time. Business kept him moving from place to place, contract to contract, and Dusk enjoyed the fast pace that life had him on. Dusk crept to the edge of the gathering, his instincts warning him of a dozen different dangers that could befall him at any point; however soon after he dismissed such notions as paranoia, for Elminster and the leader of the fabled Harper’s herself Storm Silverhand governed over this affair. Any thoughts of inappropriate action quickly fled Dusk’s mind. He could be no safer so long as he was an invited guest, an honor he would not soon forget receiving.

Dusk heard the challenge made by Elminster, and so too did he hear the clamor of the crowd, a cacophonous roar of boasts and bouts, rants and ravings concerning all matter of what lie beneath the earth upon which they stood. Stepping forward and allowing the deep cowl which covered his ashen features to fall, resting upon his shoulders in ripples of cloth akin to stones impact upon still waters surface Dusk was about to speak when another voice cut through the crowd bidding them silence.

“I will answer your challenge.” The words came from a particularly alluring Drow woman, a warrior of grace, though certainly brazen to so boldly accept even an invitation to a setting such as this. Dusk noticed one thing however that kept the gears in his mind reeling. The woman walked as though unaffected by the sun’s rays, her vision clear as any human born and bred of the light. The Mercenary Guide moved forward to better see the woman, silently closing the distance between himself and the stranger.

“My name is Aelistae D’Vrann, I can assure you I mean no harm to any of you” she added in her heavily accented Common and crossed her arms diagonally across her chest in a gesture of peace.

The only answer she got from the hush that settled around her was one armoured man who stammered “She’s a Drow…a…a…creature of darkness!”.

Dusk shook his head as he began to unravel the mystery of the woman before him, and her next words only seemed to confirm his suspicions.

“I am Drow. But I am not what you think. Anyway, who better to explore the dark than someone who was born in its depths?” she replied calmly, and just as calmly stepped into the portal.

The woman bore no condescending tone in her voice, no superiority complex worn openly for all to see, no on the contrary it seemed more like the woman wanted only acceptance from the surface dwellers..

“A castaway?” Dusk mused quietly to himself.

By her grace and choice of weaponry however, a surface-world-blade-of-distinction, I would place her amongst the blade dancers of Ellistrae, though a priestess she may also be.
Not being able to confirm his suspicions with her disappearance through the portal, Dusk moved to follow, but he stopped short of his goal, the familiar scent of unkept hygiene and musky skin wafting across his nostrils causing them to flair… Ogre...

Turning, Dusk let a small grin cross his visage as he laid eyes upon an old acquaintance,the Half-ogre Rothrar.

“Greetings old comrade,” Dusk said in a low tone. He was well aware of the many incredulous looks cast his way, as he seemed to fade in and out of existence at random intervals, and the light around his person seemed matted, duller than elsewhere. Few had seen a Shade he surmised.

Rothrar approached him and immediately began to speak about the dragon’s horde which awaited those who completed the mapping of the Underdark. Dusk figured that his Gnollish hands could hardly hold a quill let alone map anything of legibility, and was rewarded in his assessment as Rothrar proceeded to ask, beg, then offer payment for Dusk’s services below.

As far as Dusk knew, the portal could team him up with totally random adventurers, or none at all, but he was never one to turn down decent coin. So, with pocketing the ten platinum offered by Rothrar, Dusk smiled.

“My skills are yours until I deign my compensation earned in full old comrade. Come, we shall take to the Underdark like mice to the cheese, let us run this rat race for all who watch to see that castaways, vagabonds, and yes even low-born half-ogre’s can surpass the perceptions of the ignorant."

With that, Dusk disappeared, only to reappear some 20 ft away, then vanishing again to appear before the portal.

“Good People of ShadowDale, adventures and guests alike, I thank thee for thy kind hospitality. Mayhaps upon my return to this world of light as a hero, the next celebration will be held by me, and you gracious hosts will dine at MY tables.”

He gave one last cursory glance across those gathered, and with a sweep of his cloak stepped into the portal leaving only a “Who was that masked man?” echoing behind him.



Posted on 2007-12-25 at 21:17:20.
Edited on 2007-12-30 at 19:18:38 by Kaelyn

Loki
TRSG 2.0
Karma: 113/94
1606 Posts


The portal

After he had handed the money over to Dusk he had second thoughts about it. Before he had felt so sure that his old friend might not go but apparently this treasure lust had infected Dusk as well as the drow lady, although he can not pronounce her name due to the arrangement of teeth in his mouth, she seemed another fine companion if they were to be chosen in the same group.

Also with analysis of Dusk's eyes when he started talking about the hoard he realised that Dusk still took him for the greedy fool he was when they first met, in fact retirement was the very last thing on Rothrar's mind for he could not stand boredom and he only wanted enough to buy better armour.

So without another word in the world of the sun and the birds and only a nod at his friend that he might never see again, for he was sure he would survive to see this upper world he didn't know about Dusk, and barged and shouldered his way to the portal and without a backwards glance stepped into the land where night was a constant but where there was still life and where he could still see.


(Character Sheet updated)


Posted on 2007-12-25 at 21:43:00.
Edited on 2007-12-25 at 21:46:20 by Loki

Devalero
Resident
Karma: 50/6
370 Posts


Confundus Steps to the portal

Confundus steps up to the portal after finishing his glass. Always been a fan of Elminster and always been a fan of adventure so why not Looks like you'll be needing a focused mind if yer gonna map out that place .. I'll be glad to join ye on this fine quest Not wanting to waste any time Confundus takes a gnome sized leap through the portal raising his hand to wave at those behind without even turning his head ..
whoosh He's gone


Posted on 2007-12-29 at 15:12:19.
Edited on 2007-12-29 at 15:48:34 by Devalero

Ginafae
Kool Killer Kitty
Karma: 64/6
1685 Posts


Home sweet home

The portal seemed alive when Aelistae stepped through it. Its silvery surface rippled when her fingers brushed against it. The portal drew her in further when she hesitated. And it swallowed her whole when she finally stepped through, until all she could feel was the portal, and all she could see was the portal.

Then it was gone.

Aelistae could sense the ominous weight rock above her head and the brooding dark around her. Her eyes opened slightly and the monotone details of unworked stone and narrow tunnels deep under the surface of Toril confirmed what she already knew.

“Welcome to the Underdark,” she whispered quietly, afraid to disturb the quiet stillness of the place. “Back in the place of my birth.”

She took no comfort from that fact. If anything she felt a sense of loss. The happy chirp of birdsong and the soft light of the moon and stars had no place in the Underdark. Instead the only sound was provided by the drip-drip of water and the only light by the eerie glow of strange fungi.

Yet in spite of all that a determined look set over Aelistae’s face. She knew that her Goddess had set her upon this path, and she was determined to see it through.

She adjusted her cloak until it hung looser over her and left uncovered the black chainmail and black leathers she wore. It had been a full six decades since Aelistae had last travelled here but she remembered its dangers, and she wanted to ensure a weapon would be within easy reach.

A sudden sound sent her reaching for the hilt of a finely worked sword. But it was only the portal spitting out another morsel into the dark tunnel in which she stood.

Aelistae relaxed and even forced a smile, as she dipped her head in greeting.

“Well met,” she added in the common tongue of the surface world, “My name is Aelistae.”

OOC: Feel free to reply anyone


Posted on 2007-12-29 at 15:26:40.
Edited on 2007-12-30 at 15:10:09 by Ginafae

Loki
TRSG 2.0
Karma: 113/94
1606 Posts


TGFDV

"Thank you for the greeting" Rothrar replies in undercommon and seeing Aelistae's reaction says "I believe that this is the language commonly spoken among the people of the deep and your own race."
As you turn you see a strange creature stepping through the portal. He is a heavily muscled 7'2" Half Ogre with green skin, brown hair and green eyes. He has bad breath. There is a tiny tattoo of tribal significance on his neck which he keeps discretely hidden. He speaks with a husky voice in a strangely polite manner. He carries a bulging backpack and a sack over his shoulder, at his waist hangs an axe and a quiver of arrows. Also slung over his back is the largest longbow you have ever seen and as he speaks he draws is out and loads an arrow.

"I do not threaten you with this as it is simply intended for defence. Now to business, we are, I assume, stranded underground in an unknown and unmapped territory so our own lives are our first priority. What cause of action do we take if we encounter a drow?"


Posted on 2007-12-30 at 13:37:33.
Edited on 2007-12-30 at 14:24:17 by Loki

Devalero
Resident
Karma: 50/6
370 Posts


A welcomed response

nice to meet ye as well replies the small voice of a gnome as he dusts himself off after a bumpy landing. Speaking in undercommon as well. I too speak the language of the dark, I am, after all, a deep gnome .. in a manner o' speakin'
Confundus peers around familiarizing himself. I dunno know if I've been to this part of the underdark before. I don't recognize it .. but I be getting forgetful in me old age Confundus chuckles at himself and extends a hand to his fellow adventurers.

Confundus, just Fundus to me mates. Nice to meet ya. and might I say the company of such a beautiful lady will surely make this journey all the more enjoyable
Confundus turns next to the half ogre. Might you be a tall one and quite the brute too I'd imagine. We'll be needin' yer might for sure down here friend.


Posted on 2007-12-30 at 15:07:59.
Edited on 2007-12-30 at 15:10:16 by Devalero

Loki
TRSG 2.0
Karma: 113/94
1606 Posts


Welcome?

"Welcome to the black abyss my diminutive friend." The half-ogre responds jokily "Although we will need to be well acquainted on our journey our safety is more important and that is why you will seldom here me speak as I believe that we must be vigilant to keep our own skins" he says continuing his survey of the area "but for manners sake my name is Rothrar so would you now please volunteer your name." It wasn't a question, it was an order or request if you wish to take it lightly, and he was made all the more menacing by the fact that during speaking he only looked at the gnome once.

(For the DM's sake I am constantly making spot checks and electing to take 10 each time.)


Posted on 2007-12-30 at 16:21:16.
Edited on 2007-12-30 at 16:37:36 by Loki

Kaelyn
Dragon Fodder
Karma: 80/19
2264 Posts


Into.the.night

The portal flashed in a bright incandescent swirl of blue white light, expelling Dusk on the other side as though he were rejected by the illuminated magical passageway. He quickly took a look around, and was pleasantly surprised to see both the strange yet alluring surface Drow, and Rothrar had made it to the same destination. So too had a diminutive creature of gnomish origin, but so far as Dusk was concerned, each new body was one more target for the bowls of the Underdark to try and consume aside from himself.

Stepping forward and giving a sweeping bow of his cloak, Dusk’s eyes settled comfortably in the darker room, illuminated primarily by the shimmering portal at his back.

“Greetings and Salutations fellow adventurers, and welcome to the land of endless night.” Dusk spoke in Common, and again in Drow ensuring all understood. “ I am known simply as Dusk, named most likely for the constant gloom which hangs over these darkened halls, or some more profound reason which escapes me at this present time.”

The guide stepped forward and directly before Aelistae looking her over carefully before offering a humble bow. “I am honored that She who dances of the moon, and her emissary have joined us on this journey. It lends me great comfort to have such assets among us.” Dusk’s eyes may have purposely lingered just a hair longer than courtesy would have dictated on Aelistae’s features as his eyes raised from the bow taking in her entire figure. With a slight smile, he turned to Rothrar and his mighty bow.

“Old friend, nock not an arrow unless you plan on putting out an eye. The tunnels are narrow and the ceilings low in many areas, and I’d just be beside myself if something were to give you the willies and send that large pointed flighty shaft of death clear up me backside.” With a wider smile he stepped past the trio and looked around the surroundings; his keen eyesight penetrating any shadows or darkness of the area as his hands rested comfortably on twin blade hilts.


Posted on 2007-12-30 at 17:16:19.
Edited on 2007-12-30 at 18:07:52 by Kaelyn

Loki
TRSG 2.0
Karma: 113/94
1606 Posts


Speaking

"Good, we have a guide amongst these caverns." Rothrar states to the group and then approaches Dusk "Shame to employ your services again as I do not favor the underdark but it is a great relief to have you by my side Dusk" He says lowering his bow and approaching his old friend to great him "but as I have said before to you in a similar location that I keep my bow as a weapon, and a deadly one at that, but it shall not be used on you or anyone in your favor." he continues on a more serious note.

"As for the poking out of eyes any one who touches any of you shall lose much more then their sight as I am a mercenary and this is my word of employment to you all." Rothrar announces to the group.


Posted on 2007-12-30 at 17:28:30.
Edited on 2007-12-30 at 17:35:03 by Loki

Devalero
Resident
Karma: 50/6
370 Posts


More Greetings

Well met sir dusk .. and Rothrar me mighty friend. As said befor', I am Confundus .. Fundus to me friends A bit frustrated at the giant before him having to repeat his name yet again when he was in earshot the whole time but nonetheless, glad to have him on his side and not the other. I think we will make a fine team as we traverse these here dark halls. Each one in his own way shall aid in the journey. And if we be needin' a glamor along the way, I'll be glad to provide the touch o' magic we need
Confundus bowed to his new companions, smiled once again at the lady and straightened his backpack, fastening it tightly against his back. All set then or are we waitin' fer more?
This is gonna be an interesting trek indeed


Posted on 2007-12-30 at 18:57:35.
Edited on 2007-12-30 at 18:58:00 by Devalero

Kaelyn
Dragon Fodder
Karma: 80/19
2264 Posts


waiting..

"I would suggest waiting a little longer, I presume the portal will close when the competition begins, though should it remain open at least we have a point of origin, and a means of escape should things prove too much for anyone."

Dusk takes a seat by the side of the portal, and checks the string on his bow, ensuring it is in proper working order.


Posted on 2007-12-30 at 19:05:06.

JenthLiadon
Regular Visitor
Karma: 5/2
58 Posts


through the portal and into the underdark

Fires blaze in the braziers that line the wall and hang from the open doorway. The door way is small possibly five foot maybe five foot five inches. The light plays on the shadows stretching them and diminishing them as the fire dances back and forth in the mild breeze generated by the heat of ten golden braziers. The tunnel you’re standing in is well carved almost to a smoothness and wide as tunnels go allowing three people to stand abreast of each other. Not that any of you are standing as the ride through the portal was not a pleasant one and it makes more sense to sit bringing you closer to the ground so gravity might pull your stomach back to where it belongs. The ceiling rises slightly higher than the door allowing the seven foot half-ogre to slouch as he moves instead of crouching. As you peer past the door you note that the next room seems empty, it’s almost inviting. Looking in the other direction the tunnel seems to become less well tended and darker until it disappears into the horizon. Listening to the darkness Aelistae can hear the unmistakable sound of orc voices grating against her ears, everyone else hears the groans of their companions and their breathing as it reverberates through the stone sounding louder than it actually is. Upon examination of your now heavy and well endowed packs you will find thirty separate packs full of dried fruit and nuts, those who are observant and enjoy their meat, such as the half-ogre, notice quite to their disappointment that there is no meat amongst the rations. Also tied securely to the side of your packs are five full water skins capable of holding a gallon of water each. Tied to the water skins is a note that reads:

As promised a months rations. Though they do not look it your water skins can hold a gallon of water each. Remember to keep your wits about you and that very little in the Underdark is as it appears.

Signed
Elminster.


Posted on 2007-12-30 at 19:07:03.
Edited on 2007-12-30 at 19:16:19 by JenthLiadon

   
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