You have been taken by the Mists

Author Topic: The Chronicles of a Changeling  (Read 810 times)


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The Chronicles of a Changeling
« on: October 03, 2019, 07:32:07 AM »
R I V E R  O F  S O R R O W  -  E A R L Y  S U M M E R,  7 4 8
The Arvid Residence - Skald, Kartakass

     Sonja's heart was weaker by the day, and she could not stand the sight of him anymore. The helpless babe's crying tore her spirit to pieces and she was sickened by the very thought of nursing a changeling. 'They stole my baby' she muttered in a crazed desperation. She knew the child was hungry, and it was only a matter of time before the changeling grew up into a fey-thing. Her friends beseech her to change her mind, so she locked them out. Banging on the door, rattling the locks, the baby crying - it was too much and she was too deep, now.
     The door, broken, sends her screaming into a corner as wood splinters are flung to the side. Her neighbors rush in sweeping the crying creature into their arms. The man grabs her by the arm, and forces her to sit down. His words are under water, lost as if swept away by the river. She was a stone, staring up into the prismatic surface of blue and gray and ice. They force her to feed it, this thing, this changeling. This fey that looked like her baby. It's tears streamed down it's thinning cheeks and red face, stealing her child's milk. She held it close, and thought about how anyone could fall for a changeling baby. She would fight for her child, to get her little Nico back. Her neighbors doted upon her, taking care of her, the baby, and worried. She could not hear them, they were an otherness. She had been in the river since Soren went away, and all she knew was the cold rush of it's peace. If she let that go then the cries of the changeling would drive her mad.
     She did not want to go mad, she had to find her baby.
     'I'll do it.' She promised herself, summoning her composure. 'I'll take it back, and find my baby.'

R E T U R N  O F  T H E  C H A N G E L I N G  -  T H E  N E X T  D A Y
In the Woods Somewhere

     The thing cried and cried and screamed the whole journey into woods. They left at first light, and walked until the sunset. She would run back to town before it was too dangerous to make it on her own, and return in the morning for her true born baby. Running water, she thought, would keep away werewolves and vampires, and when the fey brought back her child, they would take this creature and she could finally breathe again. It is what Soren would have done, had he been there.
     She bundled it up to stay warm and placed the thing in a nook of a wayward pine, close to the bank of the Kilovan River. It looked up at her with tearful eyes full of confusion and need. She couldn't stand it.
     "Look away from me creature!" The baby only cried.
     She turned and left swiftly, and the child's cries faded and faded into the running water as she darted back north, towards Skald where she would wait out the terrible night for the return of what she thought she had lost. Only she could not find rest, and returned to camp near by a few hours later. She heard no cries and decided to spy on the tree to see if the swap had already been done, her stomach a flutter with hope. To her horror, the tree had sunk into the river, and the changeling was gone. She recoiled, and sobbed, and called out into the night with the all consuming emptiness swallowing her up, and drowning her completely.

R I V E R W A L K E R  -  E A R L I E R  T H A T  N I G H T
Rodskoven, Kilovan River

     His cries were done with all the most effort to call his mother back to him, without words and unable to express his great need for care and comfort. He was confused and alone, and did not understand the complexity of his circumstances. Where was his father's booming voice and rough hands? The milk of his mother and her tender kisses? It was darkness and chill and loneliness. His life had only been such a short, dim, weak flame that was threatening to be snuffed out on the breath of a whisper. He was alone, unprepared, incapable. Where was his mother? Why did she not love him? His heart simply didn't understand that it was broken, his belly aching for something to fill it. When he became too weak to cry, and the little noises he made faded, he heard the night creatures and knew not one of their sounds. Leaves rustling, snapping twigs, deer prancing by, the river rushing gently beside him. He was too weak to cry anymore, so he lay silent, looking this way and that from his back. His eyes were not the best at seeing, everything was so far, far away. He could feel an animal sniff at him, but didn't know how to turn to look for it, or what it was. It ran away. 
     The river got closer and closer, it's touch first cold and damp as it saturated the dirt near the tree. The water lapped against the basket and swaddling, tasting him to see if it should investigate more. The river rose more and consumed the bank, surrounded the tree, and lifted the baby into it's hands; the swaddling and basket he lay it becoming a boat to carry him away. The rush of movement calmed the baby, and the gentle spinning let him see the stars shimmer in the sky down on him as he tried to focus further away. His coos joined the choir of the night sounds, as the little baby Nico was swallowed up into the Redwood forest. 

D E E P  I N  T H E  W O O D S  -  T H E  N E X T  D A W N
Down streem, near the logging camp

     Nemetranee Caladon and her children were enjoying the cool of the morning while they ventured out to find truffles to eat and take a bath in the calm bend of the near by river. It had been a few months since coming to the forest of Kartakass, and Nemetranee was finding it comfortable on her aching body as she bear yet another child for her love, Silvanas. He enjoyed her child bearing, and so she was only too happy to bring him all he could afford, and reveled in surprising him with her pregnancies. The last of which surprised even herself, with twin girls so beautiful that she was prideful in their making. Heian was still just a toddler, small and round and curious about everything around him. Yet she was glad he could walk on his own, the twins strapped to her front and back in papooses took a toll on her otherwise slender figure. She had not been showing her new baby yet. She watched Heian's little chubby legs navigate around stones and over leaf fall, making noises in his play whose meaning was only known to him, until he pointed at the River.
     "Bahbee!" He exclaimed. She laughed dully.
     "What is that my son? No, that's 'River'. River, see? The water run's south..." She crouched down and pointed to the river, looking at it closely.
     "Bahbee?" He repeated cutely. She soothed back his silvery hair, curly like her own waves of crawling ivy.
     "River?" She asked. Her son pointed to his sisters and repeated the word, and pointed again to the river. "Oh my son, no, they can't swim yet. First you take a bath, alright?" She took his hand and walked to the river with him, a hand on the back of Lia in the papoose on her front. As they got closer, she pointed to a few truffles growing on the forest floor and instructed her child to pick them and put them in his basket. He did so, picking all of them. he took one to eat and then took an other and offered it out at the water's bank.
     "Riii-var! Rii-var! Want eat?" He held it out, and she laughed. She watched her son offer the river the mushroom as she began to set up a picnic blanket, where she put her babies down in a basket big enough for two. She looked over again, and saw Heian try to walk out into the water carefully, and she rose quickly to stop him.
     "No no, not yet, not withou..." Her words stopped, she could feel her chest tighten as she saw the basket floating there between two river stones in the bend. It was a baby! No quicker did she pick up her son and set him on the bank did she find herself deep in the waters wading with urgency to the little boat, picking up her legs wide to trudge through as quickly as possible as the river slapped against her thighs until she plunged in up to the chest. Her hands grabbed the basket and pulled it slowly towards herself so that it would not tip. She could hear her son calling curiously out from the bank, but her attention was on the little swaddled bundle in the basket. His body so light and underfed, his hands flexing open and closed and his little voice hoarse as no child's should be. He was human, and she looked upon him with fascination that he managed to stay alive, who knows how long, on the river.
     "How brave my little Riverstrider..." She let the baby grab her finger as she waded back to shore to place him beside her two elven daughters. She looked over them all lined up with a held breath, and her eldest child came over to watch, pointing at the baby.
     "Riivar." his chubby elven fingers found the baby's face, and tapped his nose. "Riivar. Hungry?" He held out the truffle.
     "River. Is that his name?"
     "Ya, mama. Riivar." The elven boy smiled, happy with their findings. Nemetranee thought about it a moment, thinking where this baby could have come from. She looked over it, so perfect next to her sleeping daughters, even if he was human. His eyes opened, revealing beautiful blue eyes with green shimmer like the river he was pulled from. So clear, so wise in his barely lived time, she fell in love all at once as he started to coo, and cry, and then become soothed at her touch. She was certain now, that she would have yet one more surprise to give her husband.

C H A N G I N G  T H E  C H A N G E L I N G   -  T W O  D A Y S  L A T E R
Rodskoven, Logging Camp

     "No." His voice was decided. He had come home to the cabin in the Rodskoven to find his wife with a human child suckling at her breast. He was having none of that.
     "You will love him if you just held him." She insisted playfully. "He has no one, all alone. Raising him would be nothing to us, the time will pass so quickly..."
     "He isn't a house cat, Neme. A pet who, when he dies, the kids cry for a few days and forget by the time they see another. He'll grow old and die before our children would even be half of maturity. You need to send him back to the humans, anyone will do." He walked over and picked up the new human baby in his household, and stared at it with a humorless raised brow. The babe smiled, and flexed his chubby little fingers towards Silvanas' hair with a cooing awe. "I am taking him to Skald. you found him on the river? he came from the north. I'll return in a day and when I do, I had better not find any more children in this house hold with spoon ears." He held up a finger as he placed the baby in a papoose, silencing his wife. "This is exactly why simply minded oafs like Barovians think we steal babies." Nemetranee huffed and shouted, but he closed the door on her in time to hear a silver ashtray slam against the wooden door. He humphed, and began his journey to Skald.
     The trip took his light, elegant feet half a day to complete, knowing the way perfectly and able to navigate the Redwood forest that they decided to come to. His kin were not as fond as he of nature, and while they teased him of being like an outsider elf, he found no real beauty or inspiration in the forest other than preferring the company of quiet trees and appreciating the intelligence of wild creatures to the boring, dull, dreary gloom of his neighbors. He tied back his long straight silver hair over his ears, and pulled up his hood. He hated cities, and this one was full of music and poets and the stench of humans. He looked down as the baby began to fuss, and put a hand on him to soothe the little thing. Quieting, Silvanas could feel a gentle tug on some stray ends of his pony tail.
     He sighed derisively.
     The afternoon was spent, and as the evening came around, he had walked up and down the road listening for gossip. Perhaps missing babies from an orphanage, perhaps a robbery, or missing family. Maybe a kidnapping or any number of scenario that would see a little creature like this one left adrift. 
     "You're the one who has been asking around about a baby boy?" A voice spoke up from under a feathered cap."You'll want to seek out Missus Arvid, the widow. She came back raving mad about a fey stealing her baby." He glanced up, looking at him critically. "Was she wrong?"
     "Thank you, human." He didn't appreciate the tone, or accusation, and the baby had become hungry again and fussed. He was loathed to do it, but he held him close and let him suckle on a bit of creme on his finger before moving on. He'd investigate this Missus Arvid and be done with the child soon enough.
     The streets became narrow, turning down paths of refuse water in a stream down the center, and smelling more and more like the suffocating oppression of an ill built human settlement. He came upon the door, but just before he knocked, he heard the voices cry out.
     "The Fey stole my baby!"
     "Get to your senses! What did you do with the child? Answer!" The raised male voice was hurt, urgent. He could hear the striking of hand to flesh as one of them turned to violence. The shouting continued, and he listened closely, looking down at the baby as he heard for himself what a mother had done to her own child. The little one looked up at him with bright, clear eyes, and reached for the elven man's face with soft chubby fingers. He really didn't have a choice, not anymore. They had already gone this far.

    The night came cold, and the door to the cabin creaked open and disturbed Nemetranee from her reverie. Silvanas laid the baby in her arms and said very little else.
    "His name is Nico Arvid, his father was part of that caravan that was torn apart. His mother is mad, thought him a changeling and left him to die in the woods. We can stay a few short years to raise him, but once he is a man, he must go on his own path, and we will return home, understood?" She smiled as best as she could, and nodded as she began to feed the poor human baby. He turned to leave them be.
     "River." She said softly. Silvanas turned back curiously. "His name is Riverstrider."
     "Very well."


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Dossier, Sonja Arvid
« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2019, 10:35:51 AM »

Name: Sonja Arvid
Birthday: Autumn, 731
Birth Home: Skald, Kartakass
Current Home: Unknown
Last Seen: Spring, 748 - Skald
Occupation: Flutist
Religion: Ancestral Choir
Notes: Sonja is a wispy young woman of average height and frail health, both physically and mentally. She grew up distrusted because of the richness of her ashy brown hair, and it gave her a constant need for approval from others, as she lacked the strength to withstand the rumors associated with her dark appearance on her own. Having shown signs of postpartum, her neighbors and fellow Choir members took turns checking in on her while her husband was away with work, and when he did not return, they took over the running of her household exclusively, fearing what she would do if left alone.  In the days to follow the loss of her child, the village reported sightings of her roaming the streets, crying for her lost baby, and blaming elves for the theft, although no one believed it was not her doing alone and feared the child dead. Before winter broke that year, Sonja gradually was seen and heard of less and less, and her home was left abandoned with no belongings taken with her. It is speculated that she went to be with the child she gave up, and rumors of her death satisfied those who asked after her. Although, come spring of 749, reports in the near by forests spoke of a woodswitch living alone as a hermit, and refusing travelers shelter unless they had children.

« Last Edit: October 23, 2019, 03:53:49 AM by Tycat »


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Dossier, Nemetranee Caladon
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2019, 12:15:06 AM »

Name: Nemetranee Caladon
Birthday: Winter, 519
Birth Home: Har-Thelen, Sithicus
Current Home: Kuhl, The Rodskoven, Kartakass
Last Seen: Summer, 774 at home
Occupation: Mother; Cynical Poet of Dark Comedy that really only lands to the very Morose in Sithicus; Herbalist.
Religion: None.
Notes: Neme ("Nemmie") as she is affectionately known in the logging village of Kuhl in the Rodskoven, is a mother of five - four of which are her own and one of which she found floating along a nearby river bend in a basket and swaddling. Neme was always considered an 'odd' sort of woman in her community, finding her days spent with her dark humor and garden of black roses. When she joined with her husband, she only did so because he himself seemed like an odd sort of man in Har-Thelen, one who preferred silence and solitude outside of city life, and this spoke to her inner wildness. It is even rumored that she was the bastard of a wild elf, based on her curly hair and inner spark, but it is difficult to tell what has foundation in truth and what is said by cruel women of another woman they don't understand. She never cared, either, and routinely used that spark in her performance poetry. When she decided to move to the forest for a while with her family, her stay was extended to accommodate her foster child, but she really didn't mind it. In fact, some say she even came out of her Sithican shell and bloomed into a personality of her own, even if cynical. She herself thinks she is rather funny, even if it's not for everyone, and the locals at the logging camp have come to know her humor and seek it along with her herbal remedies.

« Last Edit: October 23, 2019, 03:51:38 AM by Tycat »


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The Chronicles of a Changeling, Part I
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2019, 05:36:45 AM »
S H A P E S H I F T E R  -  A U T U M N, 7 7 4
Off the Crimson Road, at last - Vallaki, Barovia

     The road had been long, but it was time to take it. He left the sanctuary of his father's home and guidance now that he is long into his years of being a man of his own, and to spare his elven parents the grief of raising a human child, he denied them the chance to see him age, turn gray, wither, and die. He kissed his sisters farewell, and gave his brother the last embrace he would know, for he would never see them into maturity. He would never chase away their suitors, or know their temper as adults. And it was fine this way, he was prepared. They kept nothing from him and it was for this he was grateful most of all. He would one day return to the red wood trees and the beauty of Kartakass, the Rodskoven will wait for him, but he knew that his life with the only family he ever knew was at an end. He would write, he promised to. Now it was the time to start over, and so he went north, to where many journeys begin.
     It was rainy like he thought it would be, and the forests were lush and overgrown with bramble, thorns, and gnarled trees. Bats flew openly through the night sky as little shades fluttering in the darkness and blacking out the the already nearly black skies. When he saw the town come into view, first as a silhouette of vague gray stone walls ebbing with soft red torch lights from patrols along the wall, and then a wide farmland surrounding it, two buildings close to the walls caught his attention. One, a decrepit old church built from Tergish ruins likely, and the second a weary old tavern, with the promise of a hot meal and a warm bed. However, it was the church who's inner lights sent out a glow from the cracks in the windows and ceiling, where the bodies of the huddled people danced across panes of broken glass, obscured by the dust and filth of constant rain and hardship. 'A respite can wait' he thought, 'I came all this way, after all.' He crossed the muddy road to the church, pausing in his strides to the sound of thundering boots running towards him.
     "RUN!" She cried. He didn't know her, he didn't have the time to think about that either. He heard it first, the guttural grunting of a bestial creature. She threw open the door to the sanctuary, leaving blood smeared against it's stone, and out came an armored figure whose sword light aflame, hissing against the rainwater as it cracked and popped upon the length of steel. River knocked an arrow, and knelt, waiting for the moment to fire, his eyes cold and determined. The knightly figure braced for impact, and the beast wrestled against him in a frenzied hunger. It tried to claw at him, slashing the rain with mighty paws. River let loose his arrow, and it bounced off the hardened, furry flesh.
     "Get inside!" The command was calm, measured, and certain. A fiery sword plunged into the creature's gut, but it wasn't yet enough. River knocked another arrow, determined. A light soared over the sky, blue and white with intense magical fury, illuminating the muddy road  and giving visibility to the creature if only for a moment before it struck it's form. Two more joined the fray from the darkness, and River was certain what they were. Werewolves. A light attached itself to River's arrows, magic, lighting them aflame as the human forces multiplied, pouring from out of the temple. Loosed, he fired upon the creatures with a renewed sense of rage.
     No more did the orders of the knightly figure beg others to flee. The battle was pitched, and River took sharp aim to each of the werewolves. Each, a wolf responsible for the course his life took. Each, his mortal enemy. His favorite of enemies. The magi threw more lights, hurling them from palms unto the creatures that howled and screeched with rage and anger and hunger and frenzy. The knightly figure beheaded one, and eviscerated another, and the last succumbed to an arrow in the eye. The battle was over, and the night grew quiet once more. The group had reentered the church, patting one another on the back and congratulating each other with a nod and a gaze. River thought of his need for a warm meal and a dry bed, and glanced to the calm tavern, though his feet took him in with the others, and he began the next stretch of his journey.

W O O D S M A N  -  T H E  C O M I N G  D A Y S
Southern Forest, Vallaki

     The autumn air left a pungent aroma around the gray city as wet and decaying leaves ripened the odors that would otherwise be dormant in drier conditions. Sewers, sweat, pitch, and the stench of metal working assailed his senses and left him happy to get around the forest for a while, even if it was to collect herbs and firewood. He walked along the forest floor with silent boots, barely making a noise with every graceful and knowing step. He could hear music near by coming from the Elven settlement, Degannwy. Home of the Seelie Court, as they say. The closer he got to the music, the further away the putrid odor of the city was. But he was not going there, he had to return to the Outskirts and sell plants. A mindless task, to sell something that grows in the ground for anyone to take. Still, he needed fang to get by in the city, and he was all too willing to take it from the outlanders who were somehow above their own foraging. And even then, he did not mind. He could trust himself not to disturb the flora or fauna more than necessary by his presence, which was a good thing.
     It wasn't long before the smell of decaying flesh caught him, and pulled him to a western passage of the woods along the Luna. The river carried the scent down stream a ways, towards him, and so he followed it to see what matter of thing it could be. The passage was rife with wolf tracks, likely a hunting pack from the near by den east of the lake. He noticed several boot tracks as well, of varying widths and sizes, depth and stride. He followed it a while, listening to the near by lapping of the river slapping against the brook until it got louder and louder.
     He saw the ruins first, perhaps they were Tergish, or older. Maybe they had been Invidian camps, torn apart by defending Barovians. Ancient statues, blocks of stone that had once made up a greater fort than what was left of it scattered across the forest like forgotten rocks being reclaimed slowly by nature. A woman, sword down, hand held outstretched, both guarded and greeted travelers from a ten meter stance among the rubble. He saw it then, the stench that caught his attention down stream. The decaying corpses of deer, slain and left to rot in waste. Half skinned, half simply slaughtered. It was a waste of life, to leave an animal unused for anything else. It's meat could have provided sustenance, it's bones, tools. He looked around, perhaps half a dozen, and then something caught his eye. Exposed bone, with gray, rotten sinew binding the brittle dead together, armed in rusted and ancient gear, scattered and cracked from recent battle. They were everywhere, and out numbered the deer carcasses by twice. The boot prints from before left a chaotic footwork on the leaf fallen forest floor, and that's when he heard the ringing of steal, and clattering of bones come from a passage in the ruins that lead beneath the ground. He pressed himself against the trunk of a great oak tree and waited for whatever was coming to broach the stairwell and show it's face. An arrow knocked and a resolve prepared for the undead. He looked to the sky, light from afternoon sun after the rain clouds cleared. Could they face the light?
     Unnoticed he remained as a party of outlanders stomped up the stones and appeared rejoicing in their victory. He lowered his arrow, and watched them parade by with arms full of weapons, treasures found, and minor injuries. He stayed quiet, and observant. It was a lifestyle he was told about, before he left his family's home, that was common among outlanders. Adventuring, they call it. Was this such a thing? Once they cleared the ruins and vanished into the forest, River looked around once more at the spoiled remains of perverse undead and the victimized fauna. He had wondered, which slay the deer? Man, or bones? He set back for town, only half a bag of flora to sell, but a head full of thoughts.

A C Q U A I N T A N C E S   -  T H E  F I R S T  F O R T N I G H T
Vallaki, Barovia - And Other Places Besides

     His name was Silandris, and River knew him as Andris. A sun elf of auburn hair and a dry humor that gave him comfort. He had thought he might do better around the elven folk, but that wasn't why he left home in the first place. His father wanted him to integrate into human society, to marry, to build a family and a home and to become a man now that he was long of age to do it. Staying close to another elf would never challenge his comfort and help him grow, and River knew it. Still, it was hard to turn down the company of someone who made the most sense of all the people who came from the outer lands. Before long, he found himself thinking of the wry sun elf as a friend, a concept surely, for he had never before had one of those. He thought back to life in Kartakass. Sure, he had other rangers, loggers, people to drink with, to play cards with, to work beside, however he had never right and truly made friends, or let them in. He had known for a while, that even as he was a human, he was far too 'elven' for his village to accept. He often blamed that for his reason of being unable to find a Kartakan wife. Perhaps, he thought, he had nothing to lose befriending these outlanders here in Barovia, or perhaps a few Barovians. Perhaps he'd learn to live like the human that he was after all.
     A small girl appeared one day in the outskirts. She wore buckskin, simple garb, shells and bones as adornments, and boasted a bone-spear. Primitive and earthly, she was not threatening, kind, eager, and perhaps, only a little, naive. He had been watching her when he discovered she spoke no trade or common, and seemed to be from a very isolated and unadvanced culture in the outer lands. It reminded him of Nomads and of the Valachani of stories and songs. He over heard others teaching the girl words in common, and watched as she tried to understand them. Thinking back to his own education, and all the languages he was brought up to speak, something compelled him to raise his voice and chime in to the teaching, and even eventually guiding the girl around and teaching her in earnest as a fellow forest 'folk', as she began to call them. Her name was Shampalwe, and she was a medicine woman of sorts, and perhaps even a shamaness.
     River spent the coming days with his two new acquaintances, trying his best to let them in. In fact, he soon found himself learning all the names of the outskirts dwellers and locals he could manage to meet and speak to. Evandra, the knight, Vichard, the doomguide, and three other priestesses, Ophelia, Adrienne, and eventually after a terse meeting, Rhode, all became faces he looked for in a crowd. This was unsurprising. He was, after all, raised to be observant and social, to interact and protect the villages of the forest and borders of Kartakass. River was not without his own charm, in this regard, however, it would be the coming nights that would make it certain where he stood with his new found kinsmen.

I  A M  A  G U I D E  -  M I D  A U T U M N
Somewhere in Eastern Barovia

     Andris had grown restless and angsty, and River could not say that he blamed him a bit. Since coming to the world of mists, all anyone wanted him for was his skills, his talents. His arcanum. Barovia was hardly the place for it, and River himself was slow to trust a magician relying on spells in a book, however, many more sought his company for nothing more than the boon his magic brought and it was wearing on him in no short order. It was early in the day, when River approached the stewing elven magi, and his thoughts were only on a trek he took with his father long, long ago while he was still just a boy, to the most curious of places in Barovia. It was a few days journey, and the children were left with a visiting relative from Har-Thelen. His father only said to him a simple, earnest truth. 'Your mother seeks this now, but one day, you'll need to decide worthy people and guide them yourself. One day on your journeys, you will know where to go, and who is to be taken with you.' River waved down the elven man.
     "Come with me. I'll explain it when we get there." River offered vaguely. Andris was more than perplexed, but given his bubbling ire, he could hardly decline an escape from would be adventurers seeking to use him again. They set off, making short work of the long trek to the destination that Andris was meant to arrive, even if he didn't know it. When they came upon the decrepit, abandoned, moldy home tucked in an alley and forgotten under the imposing shadow of all else around it, River closed the door behind them and made sure that no one followed through a crack in the window.
     "What is this?" Andris was terse, untrusting and rightfully wary. River had declined to give him any answers the whole while. He searched under a bed, sliding it out of the way to feel around the floor boards for what he could scarcely remember of the entrance. "If this is a trap - "
     "I mean you no harm, this is no trap. I cannot tell you what you will find below, it is for you to take those steps. I am merely a guide, and this is your journey, Andris. Trust me." He yanked the trap door open, dust particles filled the air with spores and dirt that would once again settle there no matter how many times it was opened. With grave reluctance, Andris put his foot on the rungs of the ladder down, and descended into the dwelling's basement, with River to follow soon.
    The basement was dank, dark, and full of boxes and stores abandoned. River tried to remember his father's words and instructions, his movements and grace as he found the secret door. His fingers ran along a wall, slowly, feeling every grain of spackle, until he found the crack. Just barely able to pry his fingers in enough to reveal the door, cobwebs stretched in protest and more dust billowed as the thing swung open quietly on surprisingly well maintained hinges. River was astonished to see what they found next, as both men moved into the secret room. He had remembered something grand as a child. A large open space, light brightly, with a huge imposing figure cut in marble, raising a wand to the sky. He lit a lamp and knocked away webs and debris in the small dark space that looked no different than a closet or pantry, filled with rubble and boxes and storage, and one curious white marble statue. River was disappointed. Perhaps his child, human mind, made the fantasy grander from before, invented imagery because it was his father who had done it, and he was so great and wise and ancient in his eyes. He was about to apologize and offer to leave, when Andris was found in awe of the small marble statue.
     "Can't you hear it?" He said on quiet words.
     "I cannot. This is not my quest. I am just a guide." A light enveloped the elf, and he vanished. River was comforted, at least he was not entirely wrong about what he was meant to remember of this place, what his father intended of him. He left the room and resealed the door. Andris was on his own now, and he would wait for him to return, taking a seat on the bottom rung of the ladder in the dark, dank basement.
     A door revealed itself on magical light, and sealed shut into nothingness as the elf returned much later to find the River waiting for him as he had promised. A look of awe and enlightenment on his face, River could only imagine it was all that he needed to restore his spirit.
     "I owe you an apology." He said with a lighter voice than he's had in some time.
     "No, I understand." The two of them made their way back to Vallaki in short order after that, the last rays of afternoon on their side, until they reached the gray city as night took hold.

« Last Edit: October 24, 2019, 07:29:34 PM by Tycat »


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Dossier, Silandris Tyvorel
« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2019, 04:39:58 AM »

Name: Silandris "Andris" Tyvorel
Birthday: Unkown, between 150-250 presumably
Birth Home: Faerun, Toril
Current Home: Vallaki, Barovia
Last Seen: Autumn, 774 in Vallaki
Occupation: Wizard, Scholar
Religion: Undisclosed
Notes: Andris is a slightly tall Sun Elf, with bright auburn hair and a snarky, knowing smile. He arrived to Vallaki a couple of days before River had begun his journey. and by the time they met up, he was already established as a local 'go to' magi for defense against what looms in the dark. Growing jaded by the day, River, who had become fond of his comfortable elven presence relative to his own upbringing, took him to many places that the elf could find solace and belonging in - least of all the Temple of Mysteries. River considers Andris to have been a gateway into trusting others and making friends outside of the small family circle that he has so clung to all his life. Although, it has been some time since they last met, he holds him as the one responsible for giving River that push he needed to let others in to the dense and impassible forest of his personal space. River notes that while Andris has a temper, he comes around to seeing reason quickly and with his cunning intelligence and the wisdom born to an elf of his years. However, having trusting Andris with some particularly protected secrets from his own lore, River hopes that since last he parted, that his life is still his own.


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Dossier, River Caladon
« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2019, 02:57:45 AM »

Name: River Caladon
Ranger Call: Riverstrider
True Name: Nico Arvid
Birthday: Winter, 748
Birth Home: Skald, Kartakass
Current Home: Kuhl, Kartakass, though wandering the Core
Last Seen: Autumn, 774 in Vallaki
Occupation: Ranger
Religion: None, although very connected to nature and the old stories.
Notes: River is a bit old to still be unwed in his mid-twenties, although it can be credited to both growing up in an elven household, and having dark hair to have kept him on the fringes of the social climate. It doesn't quite help that no one back home knows if he has ever written a song, and a few friends of his foster mother showed concern for him. This, publicly, is why he left, although privately, it was to spare his elven family the grief of raising him into autumn and winter of his life. Born Nico Arvid, abandoned as four month old child, and raised by elves as River Caladon, River has had much good fortune despite the color of his hair or the shape of his roundy ear. He apprenticed under his foster father and joined the Rangers just last year, an initiative that keeps nature and villages separate from one another in such a rugged terrain as Kartakass is. At a young age, River knew that his fate was to be a guide, like his namesake, leading others to what they seek. He spent most of his younger days playing with his elven siblings and studying lore, geography, myths, legends, and cultures around the Core, hoping to one day fulfill his own quest and become a trusted guide. His father supported this, and even encouraged it, bringing him to some places no child had ever seen, and doing his part to make sure the information was as accurate as possible. River has a kind heart, although he can come off a bit bristly at first considering his life had afforded him very few people he could consider a friend. Since leaving the comfort of his family's home, his first goal had been to reach out and let others in, a task he finds awkward. Be it as it may, he does intend to integrate himself into human social circles, and maybe, if there's time after all, bring home a wife one day.