You have been taken by the Mists

Author Topic: Calson Adams - A Hero but Not wanting to be one  (Read 2959 times)

Ryltar/ Robert Archer

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Calson Adams - A Hero but Not wanting to be one
« on: September 08, 2007, 06:09:13 PM »
As the sun rose over the Barovian skies for once in a long while pushing away the dark foreboding night and normally stormy skies a woman in bright colored clothes and dress stood over near a cliff edge. The woman was quiet in her standing seeming to listen to the sky and rising sun. Observers would see her tilt her head to the side for a moment then open her eyes fully to the sun's coming light and almost embrace it in a way.

After several moments of contemplation the woman came back down from her cliff side area and resumed a soft Barovian tune. A cool wind suddenly blew across her, and the dress she wore sending it in a windy gust upwards forcing her to hold it down to maintain her decency. Off to her left near a forest clearing a low morning fog parted showing a much deeper, and darker rich mist rolling low over the ground. A soft groan of pain and muttering came to the woman's ears and in caution she drew a small but well made dagger.

Once drawn the woman approached the mists and made her way closer to the soft groans and knelt noticing the humanoid shape of a man. Strongly built and handsome in many ways. He was dressed in darker clothes of brown and earth tones. Ones utterly different from the bright colors and flavors of the woman.

With effort she turned the man over and took in his appearance fully. Inwardly stopping thoughts on his charming nature. Speaking in the barovian tongue she said. "...Who are you?" As the man turned to her not seeming to quite grasp her words she switched to the trade tongue of the Core. "...Who are you?" She said again accenting her words with the edge and point of her dagger.

"..Uh, names Demetri lass, Demetri Adams. You dont need to point that dagger at me lass I wont be hurting you, isnt in my nature to harm a woman less they force me to." Demetri said then asked. "..What about you?"

The woman looked the man over a moment again getting up and helping him in turn as well. "...Lensa Halsha." She said simply dusting off her dress and after a time of walking down a few steps from Demetri sheathed her dagger. "...Your an gigario arent you?"

Demetri gave her a curious and confused look. "...An gigairo? What's that lass?"

The woman sighed clearly losing patience with the man for a moment before composing herself. "...It means outlander are you an outlander. By your foolish idiocy you seem as one but I wish to hear this from you." She said irritation kept just in check by self discipline.

"..Well by that description lass yeah I am an outlander." He said then picked up a fallen well worn hat. "..So if I'm an outlander where am I?"

"...You are in Barovia outlander and you should see our Runie" She said. "..Our seer and leader of the camp to the south of here and where I was heading before your large carcass came tumbling into this land." She added with a mock laugh.

"..Large carcass lass? HA! Only large carcass I would make is when I'm dead which I aint." He said in reply adjusting his hat and tipping it slightly to her. "..Well you say I should see your leader well then lass take me to your leader. To quote an old friend of mine."

Lensa nodded slightly and led Demetri to the camp only a few minutes to the south of where they were. And so begun Demetri's first day in Barovia. What adventures he would see only few would know and fewer would see. But in those times a fast wistful love would blossom between Demetri and Lensa one oddly foretold by the Runie of the Vistani camp. But one that would also end just as soon as it begun.


Year and a half later...

"Wait what do you mean I and the Calson gotta leave the camps traveling area. Why cant I stay here, or you come with the boy and me to the village we saw a day back?" Demetri asked Lensa, not a hint of anger in his voice at her sudden breaking off of there relationship and his being kicked out of the camp and area the Vistani caravan traveled.

"...You must for the safety of the group and camp. You must not stay here you know that Demetri." She said plainly. Knowing she must put her own feelings behind the feelings, safety and laws of the camp and caravan. Even for Demetri she could not risk the caravan. "What winds come must be yours and the boys to face go to the village you shall find your answers there."

Demetri sighed but nodded shifting the bundle of the young baby Calson in his arms. "Never did get your ways fully lass if thats the reason I am sorry. But I'll go since you asked nicely." And with that and a final peck on the cheek Demetri and Calson left heading back to the village of Auburn that they had passed the day before. Small even by Barovian standards.

Demetri knew the dangers of the land that lay before him and he prayed and hoped that whatever gods may listen that he and the child would make it to the safety of the village before night fall.
« Last Edit: September 08, 2008, 06:55:22 PM by Ryltar/ Robert Archer »

Ryltar/ Robert Archer

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young boy Calson Adams
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2008, 06:08:04 PM »
Years later the boy and Demtrii stood among the village of Auburn, located in the forests south east of the lands of the Zeklos nobles. The village was hardly worth its name holding only around 22 forest hardened locals. Demtrii had gained the trust of those locals over the years he and the boy stayed there and had risen to become a well trained scout and tracker for the village warning it of danger such as the random werewolf pack, or band of bandits or similar that prowled the Barovian forests.

These skills he passed on to his son. Calson, though he never used the boys true name, instead refering to him as Bolson to any that asked. Even his last name was kept from him and others, the fake last name of Tralsha the name of Demtrii's mother when it was brought up.

Lately though things had been going down hill for the village, an odd disease had spread through the village claiming many of the. Then one evening after they were laid to rest screams started to echo through the village. First near the cemetary then in the surrounding houses.

"WHA?!" Demtrii said as he gathered his supplies. His panther companion also came up with him. The panther was a trusted companion that had come with Demtrii through the mists, and had served him faithfully for many years. "Bolson stay here. Do not open the door for anything unless you hear my voice...understood?" The father asked the 15 year old teenager.

"Aye father, I understand." The boy replied the accent of a barovian on his lips.

With that the father left the house with the panther locking the door solidly behind him. The boy hearing the screams felt afraid and took the training bow that his father had made for him.

From outside Demtrii saw the true carnage that lay before him, those that had died by the disease that riddled the village had risen as zombies and started to feast upon those few that remained. Taking aim with his own bow and directly his panther to cover him as he did so he opened fire. His shots were quite effective both in laying down the zombies around him and distracting others to deal with the new threat.

The handful of villagers that were still alive took shelter in the towns meeting hall barricading the door in fear and fright.   "Damn cowards." Demtrii thought taking aim again and letting loose another torrent of arrows. Now though with only a few yards between himself and the zombies it was time to take things more closer. "You aint getting my child you hear me you freaks?!" He said to the zombies even though it didnt make a lick of difference either way.

Closing in with a set of shortswords Demtrii waded in slashing and parrying aside the grabs and blows of the zombie villagers. He wasnt used to prolonged fights though more often use to hit and run strikes. Still with some luck it was able to fight back the zombies. Leaving only a handful that wandered off into the night.

As Demtrii went stumbling back into his house wounds clear across his body from a few bites, and scratches he eyed his son Calson and smiled weakly at his son's concerned expression. "Its ok boy, they're gone for now....urghh.." He groaned then slidding to his knees holding his side where  a particular savage hit had impacted. Demtrii could already feel the disease working its way through him and he exhaled slowly looking towards the panther. "Protect my son my friend, no matter what do as he says, and guard him as you did me." He said softly to the panther. It dutifully then moved towards calson and took up a position near him gurading him now.

"Father? what do we do now?" the boy asked his hands trembling and fear shaking his body.

"You must leave her boy, this village is no longer safe for you." Demtrii replied.

"Bu...but...what about you?! you always said you'd be there for me!" The boy shot back fear in his voice.

"I know Bolson, but...things happen in life, things you cant plan for and just have to learn to accept. I've given you all the skills you need to survive in Barovia, and for all intents and purposes you should fit in just fine with the locals." Demtrii coughed then a bit hacking up dark blood filled fleem. After wiping his mouth he continued. "...Sides, anyone that knew who that you were the son of an outlander is dead now." Demtrii said leaving out the fact that he had entered the meeting house and seeing the injuries on the other locals quickly shot each of them knowing that the outcome of there deaths would be more undead zombies.

The boy nodded slightly his lower lip trembling a bit. "Bu...but what about you now?" the boy said tryin to tend to his fathers wounds with the herbal salves as he was taught by both his father and the local healer.

The father brushed aside the boys efforst coughing again and knowing his time was short. "Listen Bolson listen good. My time is short but you must do as I say to you." Demtrii said through clenched teeth pain clear across his features.

"Ye...yes father?" Bolson replied.

Demtrii took out a dagger from his pack and handed it to the boy. "This is not something I relish asking you son but....it is a fate far easier to accept then turning into one of those gods for saken things." He said

The meaning of his fathers words was not lost to the teenagers and he blinked in shock at the realzation that his father was asking him to end his life. "Afterwards burn me, and everything in this village. Then make for the Zeklos lands and if you can Valiki. I'm sure you'll find a way to make due with your new life. Do you understand son?" He asked.

The teenager nodded slightly then without waiting another moment slide the knife across his fathers neck slicing it open in one deft stroke. His father actually was a bit taken off guard by the action having expected a more swift death by a stab through the back of his ear. Gagging and gasping up gobs of blood the last two things that went through the fathers's mind were the following.

The first was the realzation that his boy was angry at him for what happened, and had taken his words to mean he was abandoning him. The second thought was that whatever path lay before his son was not going to be an easy one. His sons flare of a temper and a single minded focus that lacked discipline would both be an assist and hindrance to the boy.

Still those things did matter to the father the last sounds before death claimed Demtrii was Calson gathering up supplies, and heading out of the front door, the former fathers panther companion following dutifully. "Good bye my soon." Demtrii thought as his brain shut down.

Outside Calson looked around the small village and over the next few hours gathered the few supplies of gold, food, arrows for his bow, and a shortsword from the guards rack. After that was accomplished he gathered the fallen bodies into a large pile in the center of the town and started a huge bondfire. Then moved to each wooden and straw shack in turn lightening each on fire as well.

With the burnin village lighting the backdrop around him Calson kneeded taking note of the tracks of the four zombie villagers that had went into the forests. The ground was muddy from recent rains and the tracks easy to follow. Soon cresting a hill a few miles to the east of the village he saw his quary slowly shambling aimlessly down the oppisite hill side. Still the range was well within the bow that the teen held. And taking careful sight of the heads fire off eight quick shots four in the chests of the zombies to cause them to stop. Another four in each head seconds after.

Once they lay dead the teen gathered those up as well and once more set fire to them in a large blaze.

Hours later the boy sat huddled around a tree and small campfire the slow shock settling into his young mind. In truth Calson had little idea what to do other then what his father had reconmended. Head for the Zeklos lands then Valiki. The teen was a survivor and over the next few days eventually was found by a few farmers as he wandered out of the forests. Knowing the fear the locals had shown his fathers panther he had left it to wander the forests on its own confident that it could tend to itself while he was gone.

"Oye, boy! The hell ya come from?" One of the farmers asked.

The boy though just stared at the farmer a moment before finally breaking down into tears and falling to his knees. A few moments later the truth of what happened came from Calson's lips. And a little while after that he found himself among the company of a kind family of farmers. "Dont worry boy, those demon spawns of the night cant harm ya here." The woman of the family said to him stroking his cheek.

Weeks later Calson had settled down to tilling and farming earning his keep at the family's homestead. It was nearing evening when as he knelt to gather some of the last bits of carrots and other vegtables in the field he heard a woman's voice. It took the teen a few moments to realize that it was inside his head.

The voice though did not instill a sense of worry and fear in the teen, in fact it was soothing and nurturing to his weary mind. "You did what you had to do my child." It said. In the teens mind he felt that his actions that night were justified as he would.

Shaking his head slightly then the teen got back to work, he knew that if he didnt get the work done before night fall the people he was staying with would not be happy.

Ryltar/ Robert Archer

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young boy Calson Adams
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2008, 08:06:38 PM »
It was years later the teen had now aged to his twenty first year of life and through pure effort had built  a small shack for himself on the Zeklos lands tending to his own small farm with the panther by his side. Life was good for Calson, he had a steady enough flow of income through farming and tanning animal furs. And enough food to freely give extras to the others that lived by him.

Sadly this peaceful way of life wasnt to be for long. In the middle of the evening one night there was a scream from outside. The scream jolted Calson from his sleep and to spring to the window looking out onto his fields. "The hells?" He muttered in balok.

Outside he saw a young woman being accousted by what appeared to be several hooded men. They were saying something but even Calsons sharp hearing couldnt make out what was being said. Finally the woman let out another scream for help. At his foot his panther companion nudged his leg and growled towards the door. "Your right of course my friend." He said in balok pulling on the heavy leather jacket he wore and grabbed his longbow and shortsword from the rack near his bed.

Calson and the panther then slide into the darkness outside his shack both moving with unearing silent grace towards the woman and men. When he was with in several yeards Calson raised his bow and took aim catching the few bits of words exchanged between the men and woman.

"...P..Please...d...dont...." she sobbed in balok

The men clearly were leering at her, the woman dressed in a peasants dress but it still hugged her figure in a well positioned way. "Oh come on lassie, just quite your squriming and shouting and we'll be done with this in no time." The man said in what Calson realized was outlander common. The realzation angered the man. "What right did outlanders have daring to even think of such a horrible act as they now were about to do?" Calson thought.

"PLEASE SOMEONE HELP ME!" The woman again shouted in balok trying to scrabble away from the three men. She was to slow though and snatched at her arm grabbing her roughly.

"Shut up woman!" Another man said slappingher across the face hard and sending her to the ground into the mud.

Calson had had enough and took aim at the slapper man's head. After letting the arrow fly he whistled sharply in a way that the panther knew was to attack the offending men. Knocking a second arrow Calson let fly as his panther charged at the thrid man. The second arrows struck just as true this one going through the second mans chest splattering blood over the woman. She let out a shriek at the action.

The panther then lunged at the thrid man who by this time was trying to turn to see who had so quickly laid waste to his companions and his fun. "The hells?!" He said but soon had nothing left to say as the panther lunged at his throat tearing it out with a viscious snarl. Another sharp whistle then brought the panther to heel at Calsons command. By this time he had lit a small torch and came over to the woman crouching down and offering a hand to help her up. "Ya ok lass?" He asked in balok.

The woman sniffed taking his hand her own shaking from her near event that almost had occured. Calson helped her to her feet then putting the bow onto his back. The woman looked at Calson clearly still fearful from what happened and his intentions. "The names Bolson lass. Ya be on my farm, mind if I ask ya name?" He said in balok.

The woman said nothing for the momen then in a low whispered voice replied in balok "...Anna"

Calson nodded. "Well it be a pleasure to meet ya. Ya gotta place nearby?" He asked.

The woman shook her head. "Nu uh, house be half a days walk from here. I was on my way home when night fell and those men....men..." She stammered then gripped Calson by the arm tightly clearly for support.

Calson nodded understanding patting her shoulder gently. "If ya want lass ya can come inside and stay the night here." He offered.

The woman nodded and followed Calson back to the small shack. A slight wave of his hand in gesture to the hidden panther indicated it should stay outside under cover till morning.

Calson gave the woman his bedroom for the night deciding that he would stand guard in case any others came by. The door shut behind him as she went into the bedroom soon silence filled the shack. The night past peacefully and come morning Calson had preapred a small breakfast and within a few hours the woman had been returned home.

Upon returning to his own residence however he found it burning to the ground and the farm land utterly ruined for any future work. His neighbors homes were also in a similar state and the only clue as to what happened was the reek of death around the area. Taking note of tracks in the dirt Calson gathered what few supplies remained for him and set off in search of the owners. One way or another he would find his path in Barovia. That much he was certain.

Ryltar/ Robert Archer

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young boy Calson Adams
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2008, 08:43:48 PM »
Days later after finding everything he held dear destroyed most likely by the foul reches of the undead. Calson entered the Valiki area. Only a few scant fangs to his name and a small batch of arrows remaining in his quiver. As he scanned the some what familar area he took note of both the Ladies Rest Inn and The Cultist temple to the Morninglord. "The area though is populated more by those blasted outlanders and fey then us local folks." He thought sourly. "Bah whatever perhaps they'll have their uses." He muttered under his breath in balok.

Entering the Ladies Rest Calson was relieved to see that thankfully the place was run and guarded by local barovians, "Not those damn outlanders." He thought. Less to his liking was the large customer base of those same outlanders. A few folks looked up when he entered some seeming to take an interest, others not seeming to care.

Calson strode over to the bar area of the inn, after getting a once over by the guard Radu. "What will it be junior?" The inn keeper who Calson soon found out was named Bianca asked.

Calson quickly counted up his meager remaining amounts of fang. "An ale and a room for the night, also a loaf of bread. Fresh if you got it." Calson said in Balok.

Bianca nodded and went into the back to get a loaf of bread and the requested ale bottle. As Calson waited one of the outlanders, a woman Calson took note came up to him. "Evening stranger." She said in that thick common accent.

"Damn buggers just cant leave me alone." Calson thought sourly but decided for the moment to keep things pleasant. Switching to his thickly accented common he responded. "Evening to ya lass." He then gave her a once over taking note of a concealed dagger and a crossbow hanging at her hip.

"So you get lost in this land too?" She said. Calson was a bit surprised by her question. Was she really that deaf that she misheard his accent, and his speaking balok just moments before? Calson though shook his head. "Aint lost lass, was born and raised here." He said.

"Oh,...." She said clearly embarrssed. "My mistake, um excuse me." She then rushed off back to her table and muttered a bit to two others that were at the table.

By this point Bianca had come back with his ale and loaf of bread. The bread Calson found fresh and warm. "Just came out of the oven." Bianca said with a smile. Calson thought about it a moment considering his meager funds at the moment and decided that give her an extra five fangs for the extra freshness of the loaf. This seemed to make Bianca even happier as she snatched up the coins. "Good man." She said before heading back to cleaning some dishes.

Calson left the bar area and headed over to an empty table with a chair with its back to the wall. "Last thing I need even in a place run by us Barovians is some back stabbing outlander getting me in the back." He thought.

Situating himself back in the seat he quietly sipped on the ale and the loaf of bread letting the nice pass as it would.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young boy Calson Adams
« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2008, 02:34:00 PM »
Days later Calson found himself in the forests south of Valiki. His reason for being there was simple. Without land of his own to call home anymore he had to suffice on other means. In this case hunting deer, wolves, and other similar animals. The job wasnt without danger of course. If he wasnt careful he could easily be brought down by the roving packs of wolves.

"Twang!" The sound of the arrow created as it sliced through the air into the hide of an on rushing wolf. A whimper was all that issued forth from the young wolf as the arrow sliced into its shoulder and into the vulnerable  organs inside. Another cry of pain issued forth from another wolf as his panther friend ripped out the throat of that one. Seeing the last wolf hesitate at the quick bring down of his pack mates though Caslon adjusted his aim and fired striking down the last wolf.

Glancing about a moment to ensure no more were laying in wait Calson gestured for Doloth to keep watch as he skinned each animals fur. Once that was done he divided up the bits of meat between himself and the panther and laid the rest into shallow graves for the other predators of the forests to find.

Calson searched through his pack counting up the amount of animal furs he carried. "Tha outta do it dont ya think my friend?" Calson said asking the panther. In reply the panther just licked its paws clean from the fight. Calson chuckled then. "Fair enough friend you go find yourself dinner for tonight then keep safe. I'll find ya in the morning."

With that the panther bounded off into the forest, Calson turning towards the path leading to valiki's warehouse district.

Hours later with his task done and several fangs heavier in his pocket Calson found himself once more at the Ladies Rest. For the time being he kept a dark hood about his face, not trusting outlanders to recognize him.  As before he had his back to the wall near the corner with the bookshelf. He was contently eating a piece of what had seemed to be fresh pork, or so Bianca had said. With it he had also purchased a side of various vegetables. For his drink Calson was content with a basic ale. Surprisingly the inn was empty this night and besides the Inn keep Bianca and her bulk of a guard Radu, Calson had the place to himself.

Suddenly the door to the inn was thrown open a burst of cold air rushing in. Calson allowed his hand to drift to the longsword at his side in a defensive reaction, and then looked up to see who it was that was coming in. Two people, from all appearances outlanders came rushing inside. They seemed quite busted up from what Calson could tell, even Radu gave them a careful going over before moving aside to let them in and shutting the door again.

After a moment of seeming to catch there breath they came over to Calson. "Be careful if you go out there, undead be all about!" The one said.

Calson arched an eyebrow. "Undead ya say? How many we talking?" He asked.

The two looked at each other. "Six or seven of those zombie ones....why?" The other replied.

With the Calson got up and drew his bow. Then looked over to Bianca. "Ya got a window leading to the roof of this place? Or tha overhang?" He asked.

Bianca nodded slightly pointing up stairs. "Ten fangs for the key to the room though." She said holding up one of the keys.

Tossing the fangs to her Calson took the key and headed into the upstairs room then crawled silently out onto the ledge overhang. He scanned the area carefully first with his sight then his ears. At first he only heard the groans and sounds of the unded the dark shadows masking where they were exactly. Then slowly as his eyes became used to the more dark night he picked out the zombies, slowly moving towards the inn. Taking aim Calson released his shots, each aimed for the head of each zombie.

After a total of twenty four expended arrows Calson scanned the area again seeing that all the zombies, eight in total in fact lay dead. Carefully getting down from the overhang he landed on the ground near the campfire near the door. Then once more making sure all was clear carefully crept forward. With eight swift swings he beheaded each zombie and dragged each into a pile. Using some oils he had bought for a lantern he lit the pile on fire the stench of death and burned flesh waffing into the air.

The task done a while later he went back inside the Ladies Rest front door. "They're dead." He said.

"You took care of them?...How? our weapons couldnt make a scratch on there skins!" The two outlanders said in surprise.

Calson wasnt about to tell them of his bow that he had bought from murun that he had said was effective at harming the undead. "Just lucky shots I guess." Calson replied sitting back down and finishing his now cold meal.

The two outlanders seeming to think this was an invitation to sit as well with him sat in the two other chairs. "So where had you come from orginally? Before coming to Barovia?" One asked.

Calson gave a sour look to them. "I aint no outlander....was born and raised here." He replied.

"Your a local?! And....you fought those things?" One said obviously surprised. "Everyone I've met runs or hides in fear."

"Like I said...just lucky." With that Calson got up from his seat handed Bianca back the dishes and empty ale bottle and headed back upstairs to sleep the rest of the night away.

As he reached the top of the stairs Calson's keen hearing caught the last fading words of the two outlanders. "Who was that guy? Never heard of a local that didnt run in fright at the first sign of anything dangerous." One said.

"Who cares? I just need a drink." The other said.

After securing his room Calson laid down on the bed. The rest of the night was peaceful but in either case he slept lightly. Morning would tell just what would be next on his list of things to do.

Ryltar/ Robert Archer

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2008, 05:27:52 PM »
Weeks later without any signs of any undead that he heard about Calson found his pockets heavily ladened with fang. His skills at tanning furs had grown immensely. He even took orders now from other outlanders and locals charging a small fee for his work. Because he was not master at the craft he had a clause that any furs lost in his tanning work he would cover the expense for. More often then not though Calson made a good profit on his work and as such had been able to purchase a few things from murnu to better equip himself in his travels.

The first of which was more finely crafted arrows several quarrels worth in fact. The second was a heavier suit of armor made of something called iron wood that Murnu said grew near some fey camp to the south of here. The armor he warned though was partly vulnerable to fire but for now Calson felt that wasn't going to be to much of a concern. His last purchase had been a pair of boots to allow him to tread more softly if he so chose to, and a light suit of armor made for stealth work. Both Calson thought might come in handy at some later date.

Situating his father's hat on his head Calson came out after trying on the new suit of armor. "So how do I look?" He asked Murnu.

"Like a tree hugging idiot." Murnu said.

Calson laughed slightly taking the merchants words as a joke considering Murnu then also laughed a bit. "Well thanks tha was the look I was going for." He said.

After that Calson left the shop and headed back down the Slavich Road heading westwards. Upon nearing the western gates he was approached by a woman also dressed in green, though these seemed to be robes more then anything else. She seemed to look him over a moment then spoke. "Are you also a follower of Ezra?" she asked.

Calson hid his looked of questioning look with the brim of his hat. The woman was clearly an outlander from her accent, but from what Calson knew the Ezra faith had a temple here in valiki near the Nobles district. "Might be useful in the future ta have someone like tha." He thought then raised his head giving a plesant smile and grin. "Aye, lass I am, a tracker in her service." He said, Calson knew just enough from his meager studies to know that Ezra was a female god if it was true.

His words seemed to surprise and were taken for truth by the woman. "Oh this is most excellent. My name is Sister Deneve and you good sir?" She replied.

"Bolson...." He simply said.

She nodded then a bit. "Would you join me in prayers today at the Catherdrel?" She asked.

Calson thought a moment, in truth he would rather go get more furs for his work. But having lied his way into this woman's confidence  he had to maintain that lie now. He nodded then. "Sure lead the way. Usually I avoid the city cept fore when I require things I cant get in the forests. And fore prayers I use the shrines to her service around the area." He said this truthfully knowing of one or two altars to Ezra that he had saw. Though admittedly he never used them.

Following the woman named Deneve to the large overly in Calsons's mind decorated building, he entered behind her. He watched her pray silently to a lavish altar adorned with various items, and gifts of gold. "To fancy." Calson muttered a thinking that if he did worship ezra he would rather prefer the simple shrines he found in the forests.

His mutterings were seemed to have been caught to the woman but she gave a puzzled expression. "What?" she asked seeming not to understand balok confirming for calson that she was an outlander.

"I was saying how nice. Sorry didnt know you didnt understand Balok." He said

"Oh, I see. Sorry yes I'm not from around here as I guess you figured." She said.

"Aye, no problem." He said

Calson sat idly for a short time before noting that night would soon be upon them. He stood then streching a bit. "Listen lass as much as I'd like ta stick around here I hafta get going. Got orders to fill before morning." He said

Deneve nodded slightly. "Of course, may ezra watch over you." She replied as Calson headed for the door.

He glanced back. "And ya lass. Farewell." He said finally leaving the lavish building.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2008, 10:08:18 PM »
A few days later found Calson at the Morninglord temple in the outskirts. It wasnt the first time he had gone inside but was the first time he spent more then a few moments there. Night had fallen on his way back from hunting some deer and due to running into a werewolf he was forced to take shelter in the temple. The temple he found was quite run down even though from what he had heard from others the priests charged a hefty sum of fang for there healings and services. They said the fang then went to feed the poor in the slums but even still. "They get so much fang from these outlanders tha it be more then most barovians ever see or make in a life time. So where's all it going?" He thought.

As this thought passed through his mind Calson adjusted the brim of his hat on his head. A battered ground of outlanders came up from the crypts. "There's so many!" One said.

"Aye, blade hardly seemed to hurt them if at all." Another added.

"You three should rest here and allow the undead infestation to settle down." The priest Zachea said to them after he tended to there wounds and aliments.

Calson looked up catching the priests eye. "Aint ya morninglordians supposed ta fight them?" He asked stepping closer to the front of the temple.

"Of course, but if it is the Dawn's will that we tend to the suffering of others first then that is what we must do my child." Zachea replied.

"I aint ya child priest....and sides ya did ya duty didnt ya? These folks cured of there suffering from the undead yes?" Calson shot back

"Of course...the dawn grants many gifts." Zachea said.

"Grand..." Calson said then looked to the others. "ya folks up fore it I say we go send those undead back to the pest hole they came from."

The three nodded a bit standing up again. "Alright..." With that the now group of four headed back down.

Calson's ears immeditly perked up then hearing the shuffling movements both to left and right of the stairs as they got off. "They're coming." One man said to Calsons right.

Calson pointed to the man that had spoke. "You stand here..." He then pointed to another "You stand on the other side of me both of you keep those undead at bay if they get to close. He then pointed to the thrid man who had a bow on his back. "You and me will fire arrows till they get close....but first..." Calson took out four vials two of fire liquids and another two of holy water. Popping the corks of each he threw one of each down the halls on either side. The blasts shook the hallways dropping several of the undead and harming many more.

"Start shooting!" Calson said drawing his bow swiftly and took aim at the closest zombie. With precison on either side both bowman fired off their arrows dropping zombie after zombie. As they closed in Calson looked to the other bowman. "You draw your blade and shield kill the rest." With that both slung there bows and stood next to the other two men on either side as the undead took there final steps towards them engaging in close quarter combat.

The fight was drawn out all four taking a severe beating and all four havin to use there various means in between attacks to toss down a healing potion. Finally though the undead swarms stopped and the four were left with the task of gathering up the many knuckles that abounded. Once done they went through the rest of the upper crypt carefully clearing each section with the same well thought out precsion. Upon completion the four returned back above having Zachea tend to the wounds and trading in the large amount of knuckles they had found for healing potions. "Thanks priest." Calson said upon taking his share of the potions. He then eyed the three. "Ya three need an extra hand with something sometime look me up...names Bolson." He said then noting that morning had come Calson tipped his hat to them and left the temple silently heading for the forests to resume his hunts.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #7 on: March 20, 2008, 03:06:44 PM »
Calson sat idly among the tree branches in the forests to the south of Valiki a month later. The time since the event in the Morninglordian crypts had been for the most part uneventful. During this time he had what he felt mastered his skill of tanning the more common furs, including those of the worg variety. They were still a challenge to him but even still were worth the work. After a recent sale of fur patches Calson had stopped by Murnu's to see what the man had for sale. Surprisingly to Calson he was stacking a small bundle of books on a small rack. "Wha ya got there Murnu?" Calson asked in Balok as there were for once no outlanders present.

Murnu looked up at him giving an appraising eye. "Some old books one of those outlanders sold to me. Mostly nonsesnse on how to kill stuff and a few of those stories written by that fey Zecht." Murnu replied also in Balok.

Calson wasnt interested in the Zecht books but the others perked his interest. Walking over to the small shelf he had fliipped through them taking note that they were generalities on various things ranging from undead to werewolves. Some of it seemed far fetched to Calson but one never knew. "How much for these here?" He asked.

"150 fangs." Murnu said idly.

The amount caught Calson momentarily off guard. "Ya be kidding right? 150 fangs for some books on killing stuff?" Calson shot back.

"Take it or leave it..." Murnu said.

Calson one not short on fangs at the moment due to his trade something that Murnu proably knew of and was taking advantage of relented. "Fine fine..." Calson said muttering sourly under his breath then and placing the fang on the counter to which Murnu hurriedly  counted. Then nodded. "All yours pleasure doing business."

Calson nodded slightly and headed for the forests then. Now there and reading over the book Calson read over the signature at the end of each book. "Van Ricthten..." Calson thought. "man has some interesting therioies here might be worth finding him some day to talk to."

Tucking the books carefully away in a secure spot at the bottom of his pack Calson hopped down from the tree branch and made his way for the Ladies Rest for night fall. The time lately had been more and more boring for the adventuring tracker and tanner and he longed for something of interest to occur. Unknown to Calson soon he would get that wish.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2008, 10:14:41 PM »
The coming night and following early morning had been peacefully as usual for Calson but yet he felt an urging for something of a challenge. Something that even if he had to run away from it he could at least say he tried. "Less I wind up dead." he thought with a slight chuckle.

To that end he had enlisted the aide of a halfling outlander they had introduced themselves but Calson got the feeling that considering the halfling was a traveler he would not be around enough that it mattered if he remembered his name. The two had heard tales of large spiders to the north up on the mountains there. And traveled in that direction once first light arrived. Along the way Calson took a few furs from deer and the few wolf packs and even a large white pack of cats called crag cats. Which he learned from a passing merchant.

The two eventually found there way into a dark cave mainly to seek shelter from the biting cold that had swelled up suddenly around them. "Eh, well seems we found our spider caves at lest eh Bolson?" The halfling said.

Calson looked down at him and nodded slightly. "Seems so." He replied where upon both soon set out to see what they could find.

They soon found themselves engaged by large groups of spiders. Though between the two of them they were able to cut a swath through their ranks. Eventually they arrived at what seemed to be the main lair of the spiders and again though the fight was difficult for them they overcame the spiders there. The rewards they had found were quite good. Each of them netting a large amount of coins and other trinkets. Calson had even been able to gather some of the poison from the sacks of the spiders.

"You use that stuff Bolson?" The halfling had inquired.

Calson shook his head. "Nay lad but ya never know when it could come in handy." Calson replied

"Guess so, just doesnt seem right. Most folk I know that use that stuff be assassins, thieves and murderers." He shot back.

Calson just shrugged, pocketing the various vials he had acquired. Sudenly the halflings body went stiff with a jerk. "Lad?" Calson got out before he felt a similar feeling wash over him. "URK!" Calson winced just for a moment pressing away the compulsion to be able to move.

"Defilers, destroyers! Of the queens!" A femine voice said.

The next while was lost to Calson lost amognst the pain and anger he felt towards what was happening to him. The femine voice knew how to bring about the most pain without killing the person receiving it that much he could tell. Also what he could tell was that despite the constant chances to run away and leave the halfling behind something made Calson hold back from doing just that action. What it was he couldnt say, "Proably all the blood I've lost." He thought wearily through the pain.

Finally everything went black and when he awoke he and the halfling found themselves at the mouth of the cave bloodied, cold, and in pain but alive. Something inside Calson stirred when he laid his had on his heavily wounded shoulder. In both shock and surprise he found the wound heal somewhat and the skin mend itself to something he could more easily manage with more typical means. "I...can heal?" He said to himself he felt that if he chose he could do so again a groan from near by caused him to look at the halfling. He seemed not quite as beaten as he was but something again stirred inside Calson. "He is in pain use your gifts I grant to help him if you so chose" A sweet calming voice murmered inside Calson's mind.

The suggestion was actually what Calson had thought to do but for now the source of the voice didnt matter to him. Leaning over he rested his hand on the halflings battered chest and healed the wound over in a similar fashion as he had done for his own wounds. The halfling blinked looking at him in surprise. "You didnt say you could do that." He said

"Neither did I till just now lad." He said back. "Come on we should get outta here."

With that both halfling and human headed hurriedly down the mountain both knowing and hearing the echoing words of the femine voice. "Attack the spiders again...and you shall face a far worse fate then what you felt this time."

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2008, 02:20:19 PM »
The days past slowly for Calson. After his trial at the hands of the spider gurdian as he now called the voice he found himself once more to his slight surprise in the Ezrite Cathdrel. Partly wonder, partly confusion had led him here. He at first had considered going to the Morninglordians but realized a more compelling feeling to go to the Ezrites.

Entering the area silently he shut the door behind him even with the vast expanse of the place he was able to close the door so silently that the Wardens on duty had not heard his entrance. Approaching the altar they looked up seeming surprised as to his sudden appearance. "Good evening, can we help you?" Asked the Torent Muguer.

Calson just eyed the man a moment before responding seeming to gather himself. "I'm uncertain..." He replied

The Torent came down from the altar stand area looking Calson over a moment. "You have questions then?...Perhaps I or one of the others could help?" He asked.

Calson shifted slighlty under his gaze. "I suppose." He said then went on to explain what had occured in the spider caves.

"...Then after the trial was over I found both myself and the halfling wounded. And when I touched my shoulder to treat it with salves a femine voice, this one far more soft and friendly spoke saying to use the gifts she granted to me." Calson said going on to explain the tone and sound of the voice. "Upon resting my hand on first my shoulder then the halflings I found our wounds mended not completly but enough for us to manage the trip down the mountain."

The Torent gave a thoughtful expression then nodded a bit. "I see, from your descriptions I would say Ezra has gifted you with her blessings for the trial you faced." he said with a calming smile.

"But..." Calson furrowed his brow slightly. "...I mean I'm no Warden or knight. Just a simple tracker and fur hunter."

The Torent again smiled patting Calson's shoulder. "You must trust in Ezra if she has deemed you worthy of her gifts then you must trust in them. I recall an old saying." The torent paused a moment as Calson looked at him. "....When we dream we dream of who we shall become, who we become shall show who we are, and who we are shall show in the end how we die."

Calson gave a confused look blinking a moment. The Torent chuckled faintly. "What it means is that no matter who we are we can become anything we wish, so long as we accept the skills and gifts that come along with it. As well as the responsibility of those same skills and gifts." The torent explained.

"I see." Calson said looking at his hands a moment. He glanced back then hearing the cathedrel door open behind them. Calson was slightly taken back by the woman that entered her hair flowing in a well mannered and cared for fashion. Her pose was also full of confidence, though from a quick inspection Calson could also tell she lacked a truly refined grace. Finally her eyes reflected a keen and wise mind.

The woman also wore a set of robes, similarly colored as the Torents were. "A Warden then." Calson thought standing up as she approached upon seeing the Torent and himself. "Hello Torent." She said giving a slight bow then to Calson. "...and good evening to you as well sir." To which Calson mearly gave a polite nod.

"Ah greetings to you miss." The Torent said shaking the woman's hand. "You must be the one I was expecting Nell Ward yes?" He asked.

Calson took a few steps back to give both some more approiate room and merely observed from his place, his hands clasped behind his back as he waited.

"Yes Nell Ward, Torent." She replied.

"You are ready to take the vows then?" He said approaching the altar with the woman again. For a moment a slight annoyance passed through Calson's mind at being so easily dismissed after their conversation but he soon pushed the thought away. "I am no Warden or Knight of this clergy, just some fellow that stopped by for answers. And the Torent did say he was expecting the woman." He thought mentally reasoning with himself.

Over the next few moments Calson observed the small ritual taking place before him as Nell was given her vows and accepted them. As well as a silver sword and shield. Calson's eyes took note that both seem quite well made.

Once the vows were done Torent glanced in Calson's direction and whispered to soft for him to pick up the words to Nell. She nodded slightly. "I shall do my best Torent." She said outloud then approached Calson extending a hand. "Forgive me for interrupting your time with the Torent. Sister Nell Ward, might I have your name sir?"

Calson extended his own hand shaking hers in return firmly but with approiate grip nodding slightly. "Names Bolson lass, a tracker and hunter." He said.

Nell tilted her head a  moment in seeming slight study and then surprise. "You are Barovian?" she asked.

He nodded a bit. "Aye, born and raised here. Tha a problem?" he said.

She in turn shook her head. "No no of course not, its just...well forgive me again but I have never encountered a Barovian yet who has accepted Ezra into their hearts." She said.

Calson shook his head slightly. "Well, I wouldnt exactly say I'm a follower yet, I just had come here for answers to some questions on recent events." Calson said briefly going over what he had said to the Torent while Nell and he sat on one of the benches listening.

"I see, well I would have to agree with the Torent, it is clear Ezra has deemed you fit to carry her blessings. You should feel honored." She said with a smile.

Calson nodded slightly running his hand through his matted black hair. "I be more confused then anything else lass." he said.

Nell nodded a bit again. "Clarity will come in time trust in that and stay true to your virtues, and Ezra, and she shal continue to gift you with her blessings." She said with a smile.

Calson nodded a bit again taking in her words. "Guess so. Suppose I'll see where this path takes me." He said having to stop himself from just out right divulging about his past. Which this very thing caught Calson off guard, he never felt so relaxed around anyone he had met, and here was some woman he hardly knew for only less then an hour and was about to tell her about himself.

His moment of pausing didnt seem lost on Nell who Calson took as highly perceptive. "...I am sorry if i intruded into something personal Bolson." She said with an apolgetic tone and posture.

"Nay lass, didnt intrude on anything, just be I'm more used to being on my own then having more then a few words with someone. Aint much for social graces ya understand. My life hasnt been an easy one growing up..." He said again having to stop himself from divulging more then he wanted.

Nell finally seemed to realize what was going on and nodded a bit. "Well if you would rather not talk of it that is fine." She said.

Calson got the feeling she was about to leave but spoke up. "I wouldnt be adverse to learning a bit bout ya if'n ya not mind me asking." he said.

Nell nodded a bit. "Of course I would be glad to." She replied.

Over the next hour and a half Calson listened to what she said about herself learning a bit more then he expected about the woman, who seemed quite open and willing to share about herself. No one he had ever met had so openly talked about themselves like she had. And despite normally not caring about what made a person who they were, he found himself genuienly interested with her tales.

When she finally finshed Calson nodded slightly. "A fine tale..la..." Calson paused. "Nell..." seeming to wish to use her given name rather then generalizing like he did with others, again something that he didnt seem use to doing.

"Of course Bolson, I was glad to share it. Perhaps another time when you are willing I could hear about yours?" She asked

Calson thought about it and nodded. "Fair enough, seems fair. Though I admit its nothing exciting." He said slightly lying in case any enemies that served undead were around. Though confident that wasnt the case Calson wasnt about to take chances.

"Well Bolson its been a pleasure to speak to you, but it is starting to get late and I should turn in." Nell said standing and gathering what little she had.

Calson nodded also standing and gathering his things. "Of course, I shall see ya around..." He said then again seeming to surprise himself finished. "...ya keep safe aye?"

Nell nodded as they left to go on their own ways. Hers towards the Broken bell, and Calson's into the forests just outside the city.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #10 on: March 28, 2008, 12:55:39 PM »
OOC: A warning this post is a bit dark at later stages

==========================================

A week later found Calson stealthily following a track of what he had determined as being undead, most likely zombies. His trek had taken him to the north up the mountain side again. Another group of people were with him as well but they had strayed behind losing the trail that Calson had so easily marked for them to follow. "How hard is it to follow zombies?" He thought pulling his cloak tighter about him as the wind howled by. Eventually the path divided one heading to the left int a set of crypts, the other to the right into the caves that Calson recalled with a shudder contained the large spiders. "First things first." He thought and headed into the crypts to the left.

He soon found his quarry shambling around mindlessly on a bridge. "Piece of pie." He muttered his presence still not seen by the mindless undead. Calson slowly uncorked several vials of holy water, and flasks of both acid and fire liquids. Tossing two of each at the zombies on the bridge the results were either they fell off the bridge or died where they stood. An odd thought passed through Calson's mind as he watched one undead burn and melt from the dangerous combinations of liquids and oils. "Wonder if they feel pain?" He thought.

Calson shook the thought away it didnt matter what mattered was that they were destroyed. Nothing else then the total destruction of there kind would ever make him happy. His life was one of silence and a road traveled alone. "Nothing shall detract me from that." He thought.

Taking the last melting and burning form of a zombie down with an arrow shot to the head and pushing it over the bridge side Calson slowly made his way out of the crypts. "Now for the other pack." He thought, hoping that if he did run into the spider guardian she would understand what he was doing and allow him to do it. "Sides, in a way I'm protecting her brood from the undead." He thought reasoning with himself summoning up his courage. As he did this he took note of another form moving into the cave almost without a care for what was around them. Even from his vantage point Calson could tell the form was probably either an elf or a small human, wearing heavy armor and laden down with weight.

Taking another breath and slowly following from a distance behind the form paused at the entrance to the cave. Soft mutterings Calson over heard identified the person in question as an elf and a woman at that. Though the tone and accent of the voice he could tell wasnt the spider guardian. After a short delay of imbuing herself with several blessings she glanced back a moment near where glance stood as a rock slide away from his boot and over the edge. For a moment Calson thought she had heard him which surprised him. But then he felt a cold form brush by him which caused him to glance slowly back. He thought for a brief moment he caught the sound of a form but passed it off as being just the wind.

The elven woman went inside the cave then and Calson carefully followed. "Perhaps she saw the undead tracks too and is also hunting them." He thought as he slide inside the cave entrance. The painful memories flooded his mind as he looked about the entrance area and noted the webbings. The elf took off at a slow jog which Calson followed.

A small infestation of small spiders attacked the elf which she soon smashed to bits. By this point Calson took note of the also destroyed forms of the zombies among the smashed forms of the baby spiders. "Least one job taken care of now for this one." He thought moving to right behind the elf woman as she went to smash another small spider. He slipped from the shadows taking the woman by surprise grabbing her mace arm and stopping her from killing the spider. It in turn fled off into the cave depths.

"WHAT?!" She said in surprise her strength belaying her smaller form taking Calson off guard by retching her hand free. She backed off from Calson fear and worry in her eyes.

He held up his hands showing his had no drawn weapons though it wasnt hard to see the longsword, shield, and bow on his person. "Easy lass, aint wanna hurt ya..." He said in his most convincing voice. In truth though if it meant preserving these spiders, and avoiding the wrath of that spider guardian again he would if he had to.

"Who are you?" She asked still not letting her guard down.

"Names Bolson, a tracker and hunter." He replied. "...and ya lass?"

"Luna....priestess of nature." she said.

"Luna huh?...fair enough pleasure ta meet ya." He said glancing about a moment to make sure no more spiders were coming there way.

"Are you here to destroy the infestation too?" She asked.

"If thats you then yeah." He thought but held back the words. Instead he gestured to the undead. "Was tracking them when I noticed ya. Lass look ya in danger here. Far greater then I think ya realize."

"You destroy the undead too?! Thats great!" She said happily giggling as well. The action surprising Calson for a moment.

"What is she some kid?" He thought. Then shook his head slightly. "Lass this spiders be sacred to a guardian here. Ya killing them be gonna wind ya up in a heap of trouble. Look lets just leave here. Be a mining camp just to the north of here we can use to wait out the night, and talk fore a bit." He said in offering.

"What?..no no we cant do that these spiders hurt people we have to destroy them!...come on!" With those words Luna took off running around the bend.

"Blast it lass! Dont!" He shouted taking off in pursuit. But as he rounded the bend he could already see the group of large spiders and smaller ones already destroyed by some divine blast.

Calson sighed heavily reigning in his flaring temper. "Gonna get us both killed lass! Ya dont realize wha ya doing!" He said approaching her again his weapons still not drawn.

Luna eyed Calson again a moment. "Sure I do! I'm doing good! I'm killing these nasty things and saving peoples lives!" She said conviction clear in her voice.

Calson shook his head. "Lass evidently with those huge ears of yas ya didnt hear me right. There be a guardian in this cave, mean one too. I'm telling ya if'n ya dont leave here now she's gonna come after ya and probably me too and harm us both." He gestured to one of the scars on his face. "Trust me its painful. So PLEASE lass just leave for ya own sake and mine. Ya say ya wanna help folks, tha's all fine and dandy but right now the person in danger here be ya self. So think of yaself for once and leave here fore the guardian gets ya."

"NO! I have to destroy these awful things before they can harm others!" She shouted then took off around another bend.

"BLAST IT LASS!" Calson said his anger surging again. This time he drew his long bow knocking an arrow.

But as before he rounded the corner to find still yet another batch of spiders destroyed by the elf. Calson took aim at her and loosed an arrow over her head. "Lass, stand down. Last chance." He said knocking another arrow.

Luna spun eyeing him now with hurt and anger in her eyes. "Your just like the others! Always wanting to hurt me when all I want to do is help people!" She said.

"Lass, I dont wanna hurt ya but ya leaving me no other choice. Now please last warning, stand down and leave here." Calson said adding a bit of a threatening tone to his words. "I will fight ya if'n ya force me to."

Surprising the elf started to cry and Calson hoped this was going to be a sign she was backing down. Yet even still Calson kept his aim tracked on Luna's head ready for a kill shot if need be. "Come on lass jus stand down, please." He said again

"Just like all the others!" She shouted then and quickly chanted off a flurry of blessings the effects of such were that Calson's released arrow shot missed from the flurry of divine energy.

Drawing his sword and shield after slinging his bow calson scowled. Anger again flaring in his face. "Damn it lass ya got no idea the danger ya got us both in now!" Preparing himself for her charge.

The fight was not entirely one sided. Calson was able to strike several blows on the elven woman and for a time seemed he might actually beat her. But then after and series of chants a spider of all things came to the elf woman's aide biting at his leg with a sweep of its fangs. "GAH!" Calson cried falling back and feeling his muscles weaken from the poison. Soon after Luna came at him again and in his now weakened and out numbered state Calson soon felt darkness over come him.

Darkness reigned around Calson for a time feeling nothing but pain, then a solid kick to his ribs jolted him awake again. "Wake up!" A familiar feminine voice intoned. It took a moment for Calson's memory to kick in before he realized that it was the feminine voice of the spider guardian. "Urghh, I'm awake." Calson muttered as he brain slowly got into focus again. He realized he was tied and bound between the webbing of spider webs again. Just next to him though was also the form of Luna, further wounds on her showing that the guardian had struck her as well. Calson then shook his head sadly. "I warned her...." He muttered.

Slowly a soft light came about them and Calson was able to take in the features of the spider guardian. He was able to tell that it was an elf, though the skin was far darker and the hair a white grayish color. She had an exotic beauty to her but one that Calson could also tell was one of pure malice and deadly. A soft groaned from next to him indicated to Calson that Luna was also coming around.

As she tried struggling against  her bindings without success Calson looked over at her, as she caught his eye. "I told ya didnt I? But ya wouldnt listen." He said.

A harsh blow across his face silenced any further words. "SILENCE!" The woman said. Calson nodded slightly falling silence. "Now what were you doing here?" She said to Calson. "Was my warnings not enough for you last time? Or must you suffer once more?"

"Lass, I wasnt here to destroy ya pets, I was here to get tha elf there outta here, and then tried to stop her from killing more of ya pets. Only reason I was round here was to destroy those zombies ya proably saw at the entrance there. Was more concerned fore ya and ya spiders well being from those zombies then anything else." He replied.

"The godess would have dealt with them." She replied. "...so you say though you were here to stop this elf hmm?"

Calson nodded. "Aye, ya can see the wounds I caused no? as well as my own wounds from her weapon?" He added.

The dark skinned elf looked him over carefully slowly nodding a bit. "You provide proof of your deed but, nothing I fully trust yet." She replied.

The dark skinned elf then turned to Luna. "So why were you here?" she asked.

"You! you foul evil thing! Let me go!" Luna said struggling against her bonds again. A slap across the face to Luna caused her to cry out in pain, she caught Calsons's eye a moment. "Please, sir help me!" She begged before another slap shut her up again.

Calson closed his eyes at her words sighing softly. "Lass, I warned ya how many times, I pleaded with ya to leave those spiders alone, tried reasoning with ya. But ya wouldn't listen to me. Now ya want me to save ya? Fight something tha I know I cant beat? For wha? In the vein hope tha ya escape? While I do what? Rot on the ground dead?" Calson shook his head slightly then pausing. "...nay lass there aint anything I can do fore ya, and ya brought this on yaself." Surprisingly Calson expected a hit from the dark elf woman for his speaking out of turn but none came.

"Drudoc will save me! She always has!" Luna cried out struggling again.

The dark elf just laughed. "That hin?! She doesn't even know where you are, nor could she defeat the will of the goddess." She said.

Calson did what he could to take the strain off his feet and then rested his head against his arm a moment with his eyes shut trying to block out the sounds of pain and whimpers from Luna as the dark skinned elf went to business on punishing her. Several times Luna again begged for Calson to help her, but each time he gave a simple shake of his head and a simple "No, lass, ya brought this on yaself for not heeding my advice." As the time passed he tried blocking out the cries of Luna's pain but failed at it.

After almost two hours of it silence fell and he opened his eyes again looking over to the slumped passed out and bloody form of luna and the dark elf woman. "Ya done with her yet? I think she learned her lesson." Calson asked.

The dark skinned woman turned to him a slight coy smile to her lips. "I've hardly begun human, Bolson was it?" She asked.

"Aye lass, Bolson." He said.

"Mayhaps you would enjoy giving her punishment as well for what she did? Both to the spiders, and attacking you?" She said leaning in close to him her scent mixed with the feral scent of Luna's blood.

"No lass, she brought upon her wha she's getting here now. But I wont punish her for wha she did. Ezra shall do tha when she dies...." He paused a moment the comment catching him off guard. "...or this goddess ya talk bout..." He added then. The further comment seemed to cool the slowly building anger at his words about Ezra from the dark skinned elf.

"Very well, hang there then till I finish, if anything remains of her you can have her." She said walking back over to Luna.

Calson sighed softly guilt slowly seeping into his head, as the mixture of the memory of Luna's screams and pleadings for mercy and help echoed and mixed with the further screams that resumed as the dark skinned elf resumed Luna's punishment. Then after another short bout of this silence came again, and Calson chanced a look over again. Luna was not cut down and stripped naked tattoos and runes on the elven woman's beaten and bruised body. "Wha ya doing?" He asked the dark elf.

"A sacrifice to the goddess." She replied simply also stripping down to nothing. Despite himself Calson watched the slowly emerging ritual. To his horror Luna was still alive as the cuts were made down her chest, cut retching screams echoed forth from her as slowly the dark elf removed Luna's still beating heart, before tearing it away from the chest cavity. With a final twitch Luna fell still her eyes in her death throws boring into Calson's own and her last words seeping out. "...help....me..."

The dark elf intoned some words in an unknown language that Calson didn't recognize, as she laid the corpse and oddly still beating heart of Luna into a cocoon. It slowly moved and bulged then a large ghostly like spider coming forth in a burst of what Calson could only tell was divine energies. The spider seemed highly intelligent and spoke in the same dialect as the dark elf woman. Slowly it advanced on her biting into her chest leaving two small puncture marks. The dark elf went still then a moment, and the spider turned towards Calson slowly making its way to him as well. Hunger clear in its many eyes. Desperation filled Calson as he tried to get free but failed. "Ah come on!...I was trying ta save ya kin, look if this be from before I'm sorry! But I didnt know! I cant be blamed for tha can I?!" Calson got out as the spider slowly crawled on top of him venom dripping from its fangs onto his chest. Slowly it seemed to enter into his chest and disappeared

Calson inhaled sharply as a pain lanced through him for a moment before passing. Shaking his head slightly to clear it he found his bindings fade away and he slumped to the ground. He eyed the still form of the dark elf woman then Luna's destroyed body. Moving over to the dark elf he found her alive but her breathing shallow. Rummaging amongst his pack he took out a herbal salve, and dressed the bite and wound on the dark elf. As he finished her hand shot up grabbing his frightfully hard. "Gah!..." he got out wincing slightly at her surprising strength. "...Easy, just tending to ya bite." He said as she left him go and he moved back.

The dark elf woman looked at her chest noting the bite and bandages which Calson noted didnt seem to have any effect on the poison. Clearly it was something different then he had ever seen. She eyed him slowly then as if something or someone had spoken to her with a slow nod. "I understand my queen." She said then once more looked at Calson. "...for reasons I can not fathom the goddess has released you. And granted you mercy for your service in your attempts to save her brood. You are to take that elf garbage out of here, and yourself. Do with the elf as you wish." With those words the dark skinned elf dressed herself and gathered her belongings before disappearing amongst the gloom.

Calson took a moment to gather himself. His head felt heavy as did his chest. He felt a guilt weigh down on him unlike anything he ever felt before. The last words of Luna's dieing form begging for help from him. Slowly he took a breath again shaking his head again and pushed the guilt away. "Ya brought it upon yaself, aint my fault." He said reasoning. Then looked to Luna. "Now wha to do with ya?" He thought gathering her things and what remained of her body.

He emerged from the spider cave carrying her body blinking a few times at the first rays of the morning. "Could always leave her here. After all she got what she deserved." then another wave of guilt swept over him and he sighed a bit. "...no I cant do tha, wouldnt be right." He said outloud laying the body down and softly praying to whomever would listen.

Surprising himself a gasp of breath filled Luna's form as he extensive wounds healed up miraculously. Calson had taken a short time before hand to wipe up the runes and markings on her body. "What?" She said rubbing her head slowly. Then eyed Calson. "What happened. And who are you?"

"She doesnt remember, me or anything that happened." Calson thought. Trying to decide what to tell her. "Well, I lying once got me outta trouble might as well do it again." He thought once more handing over her weapons and items. "Ya were attacked by..werewolves just down from here. They killed ya I came upon ya a short time later driving them off. And with ezra's prayers brought ya back." He said putting on his best convincing tone.

Luna nodded slowly taking her things back. "I see, thank you." She said gratefully then smiled. "Your a good man sir!" She giggled a bit then. "I'm sorry I caused you such trouble here take this." She said handing over several hundred coins to him which he took. "I got to get going now though! So much to do and people to save" She said getting ready to run off. Calson quickly grabbed her wrist tightly.

"Lass, before ya go. One thing I'd ask for ..." He paused. "...for saving ya life. Dont go into this cave here ok? No matter wha." He said.

Luna slowly nodded then. "Well, ok I guess I can do that since you did so much to help me and save me." She replied.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #11 on: March 28, 2008, 12:56:22 PM »
OOC: Ending that last post since i go to long with this one :P

=======


Calson nodded slowly letting her go, which she soon ran off down the mountain. Standing amongst the snow cliffs Calson looked out over the scene having entered an old ruins of a monastery and stared over the cliff edge. He stared at his hands then. Having found that through this experience his small amount of divine skills were further enhanced. "What do I do now?" He thought "...she begged for help yet I denied it. Was I right in what I did or was I wrong?" He said softly in balok.

A voice behind him from a small building intoned something. "Who you are will reflect who you become. Thats all you need to know." When Calson went to investigate the feminine voice all he saw was a few faint whisps of mist fading away.

Calson took another breath then nodding slowly pushing away any last visages of guilt or worry from his mind. "Luna got what she deserved. I tried to help but she didnt want it. In the end she was punished for it rightfully." He said reasoning to himself. With those last words he left the ruins and headed back down the mountain side taking a few larger deer for tanning at a later time.

Calson didnt realize it yet, but the darkness slowly creeping forth inside him would one day come back to haunt him. Even in this redemption was far from complete.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2008, 04:41:35 PM »
Weeks passed and Calson avoided any contact with anyone. He felt lost and unguided. His only goal the utter destruction of any forms of undead. He had grown more confident in his skills and ventured alone into highly dangerous areas. Places till then he never knew even existed. Yet by some form of luck he survived and endured, eventually though this form of life couldnt last and he finally made the decision to return to Valiki. The trip though would have to wait till the morning though. At the moment he was walking down the cobblestone street of Barovia village. Dusk soon coming onwards.

His keen hearing soon picked up the soft moans and cries of a woman from a near by house. The sounds seeming pained and languished. His curiosity peeked he approached carefully finding that the streets were already empty by the peasants and guards with the approaching night. He found the door to the seeming quite old house unlocked and entered slowly aware that he could be walking into a trap. Easing the door shut behind him after checking for anyone behind it he gave the lock a slow flick locking it behind him. Then slid a few near by plates against the door at the least it would give him a slight edge if someone tried coming in after he entered.

Easing the longsword he carried from its sheath and then the large shield as well he eased his way forward on alert for more sounds or danger.

As he entered the main living area he found the place a wreck. Dust, mold, and spiderwebs constantly about the area. On one of the tables was a large book and Calson eased over to it reading over the faded letters. He blinked in surprise finding them accounts from almost 100 some years ago. As he went to turn the page the book grumbled to dust at his touch. Brushing his hand on his pants leg he turned to the table where a more sturdy journal book laid. Taking the utmost care he eased it open carefully looking over the few journal entires.

As best as he could tell some woman had a daughter who ended up killed by something. Probably a vrolock from what he could gather as she had been found drained of all life. He shook his head as the last entry indicated the woman Mary's attempt to end her life. Calson suddenly dropped the book it to fading to dust at the drop as he took up his sword and shield again at another groan and cry of anguish. "Who's there?" He spoke out looking about. Calson's blade was merely silver-gilded but he held a variety of cloths that would for a short time enchant it to pierce the skin of thicker foes. His longbow was specially crafted to harm the undead in particular but in such close quarters he realized he would only get one maybe two shots off before the foe closed in. Running the oiled blessed cloth over the sword he slowly eased his way up the creaky steps hearing the moaning again.

Calson found himself on the landing of the second floor two doors presented to him both closed. Easing the first open he found it containing two beds both unused for the 100 some years since someone last lived here. Then again there was an anguished cry from the other room. And Calson pushed the door open with his foot before entering with a sweep.  Facing him was a tormented spirit of a woman. From all appearances the woman Mary from the journal.

"Is that you my daughter?...Time has been so long...my vision fades." The spirit asked.

Calson edge the door shut behind him though kept an eye on the spirit. "Nay last I aint ya daughter, names Bolson." He replied

The spirit seemed confused a moment. "A man?! How did you get in here where is my daughter?!" It demanded.

Calson stood ready in case of an attack. "Look spirit, I aint sure where ya daughter is. From wha ya journal said she was found dead drained of all her life close to 100 years ago near Tser Falls near Castle Ravenloft. As fore how I got in here. I heard ya anguish and came in ya doors were unlocked." He replied.

The spirit let out another wail of despair at Calson's blunt words clearly not happy. "Look wha happened to ya daughter after she was buried hmm? Did the priest entomb her right so she wouldnt rise as a vrolock?" He asked.

The spirit seemed to look deep into Calson's mind and even he felt his soul studying him before replying. "You hunt them, and their servants. Even spirits like me yet you do not attack young man why?" She asked.

Calson gave an idle shrug. "Ya be right I do hunt the undead and the vrolock in particular. And to a degree spirits like yaself. My concern here be if'n ya daughter rose as a vrolock 100 some years ago. And if'n tha be the case to find her and lay her to rest. Ya be a key to doing tha."

She again studied Calson with that deep penetrating look. "Your own soul is troubled, lost and unguided. Just like my poor daughter was before she was drained of all life" Another sob racked the spirit then it again wailed in anguish. "...I just want to know she lays at peace and to pass on to the other realm."

"Well if'n ya can remember where she be buried I could go search out the tomb and check on her, if'n she be a vrolock then I can also try to find her and lay'er down to rest. Then come back here to free ya spirit as well if'n I can." Calson offered.

The spirit gave a slow nod seeming to try and wipe her ghostly tears away. She gave Calson a decently detailed description of the daughter as well as a vague idea of where the coffin was buried in the graveyard of the village. "Be back soon hopefully." He said then quickly made his way back outside.

Calson jogged along the abandoned streets then making his way for the local Morninglordian temple. Entering the main yard he glanced about then entered the temple proper. The local priest welcomed him as he entered and Calson quickly brought him up to speed on why he was here when asked what he needed.

The priest gave a slight nod. "You are welcome to look as long as you do not disturb the graves even of the daughter. I can assure you there are no vrolock resting in our graveyard." He said.

"Right...we'll see..." He said then turned and walked out of the temple to the graveyard. As he entered his nose caught the scent of carrion and death and soon found himself engaged by a group of several ghouls. "No undead my arse!" Calson said as he dove into the fight.

His skills proved well honed not one of the ghouls were able to land a single hit on him. Calson though had no such troubles quickly brining all down and lobbing off their heads. He scoured the graveyard carefully before finally finding the correct grave marker. Careful study of the ground though showed someone had recently disturbed it. "Hmmm" Calson idly rubbed at his chin a moment. Before he heard a twig snap behind him. Whirling to a defensive posture he found himself face to face with a woman, a quite handsome barovian woman at that. Around her late teens early twenties. Had Calson not had the information he had now on what the daughter looked like he would have been tempted to meet her eyes gaze. But he stead fastly refused. "Ya stay back vrolock. None of ya tricks." He said hastily wiping the cloth over his sword again. Then downed a few pieces of garlic and a potion to bless and aide him for the coming fight. "Make this easy kneel down let me destroy you then stake ya. Ya mother be suffering as a spirit in grief over wha ya became." He said hoping that maybe the vampire would do as he asked.

"Your stubborn for a moral. I found them to be so tasty." She said licking her lips her fangs evident. "Come gaze upon my beauty. I can guarantee you one last night of enjoyment and pleasure before feeding."

Calson snorted. "Fat chance lass, ya wanna do this the hard way fine...." He then flicked his boot up where he kept a vial of holy water stashed. The motion was enough to remove the tied down cork and the aim true to land directly on her form. The holy water having the desired effect hissing on her undead flesh.

The female vampire let out a hiss and cry of pain. "You foolish mortal I will make you suffer for that!" She cried then charged at him.

Calson though was ready for that and easily side stepped her clumsy attack delivering a back handed blow with the pummel of his sword then a smack with his shield to knock her down. "HISSS!" She cried again trying to bite at his ankles but failing. "You are fast and strong mortal." She said quickly dodging Calson's own counter attack. "And I shall enjoy feasting on you and prolonging your fate before you die."

"They just be words lass, prove'em with action." Calson came in with a low feint but instead of his sword making contact as the vampire expected it was his knee to her lowered face. Calson heard the satisfying cracking of broken jaw bones. With her upward body thrown back he quickly spun brining in the sword for a knockdown blow. Once on the ground he slammed the blessed blade into the chest cavity giving a savage twist.

Another cry of pain issued forth from the vampire woman to which Calson mearly replied with a follow up of holy water and garlic stuffed down her throat. The woman laid still steaming issuing off her body as it slowly misted then seeped into the ground marking her grave. The gate to the graveyard was pushed open and in rushed a flurry of light carriers weapons drawn. "Whats going on?!" they demanded.

Calson wiped the sweat off his brow as he pushed aside the shallow grave uncovering the coffin. "I said whats going on?! Answer me outlander!" the carrier demanded.

Flipping the coffin open Calson drew a wodden stake and in one swift motion drove it into the heart of the resting vampire woman. "Aint no outlander..." He simply replied. A sudden lurch from the resting vampire and a cry of pain as she slowly decomposed to nothing issued forth next. Calson plucked the pair of vampire fangs resting in the coffin bottom showing them to the approaching vicar. "No vrolocks hmm? Next time study your burials better." Without another word Calson brushed by the stunned carriers and priest and jogged out of the temple area.

The peasants fearing what had occurred didnt follow him and Calson made his way back into the house and up the stairs. The spirit of Mary was there waiting. "You return...what news do you have." She asked.

Calson tossed the vampire fangs to the floor. "Your daughter rests in peace now an no longer is a danger to anyone else. I am sorry but, there was no other way." He said.

The spirit mother dropped to its knees trying to touch the fangs but was unable to. "...she is...gone then...so my precious, so sweet angel." She then looked to Calson again. This time though any signs of sanity were lost in her good dead ghostly eyes. "...you did this you killed her!" the ghostly spirit charged Calson before he could prepare slamming him into the wall with force making him drop his sword and shield. "UMPH!"

"Die! killer of my sweet baby die!" The now crazed ghost went on.

Calson disarmed of any available weapons tried to grab the ghost while chanting in balok trying to use the small healing blessings he was gifted with to defend himself. Both hand faintly glowed with divine positive energy as he made contact with the spirit. With a pained scream the spirit dissipated fading to nothing. Calson grunted slightly gathering his possessions back up then noted a chest nearby. Jimmying open the lock he took a peek inside.

Leaning down he carefully removed a old locket and amulet combination. The writing  on it seemed to be barovian but used a far older script then what Calson knew. Still he could tell by studying it that it held divine energies ones that the user could channel to heal others, provide light, or camouflages themselves with. "Not bad." he thought. Heading back down the stairs Calson noted that the morning sun would soon rise. "Best to get outta here before folks track me down." He muttered pulling a hood up and jogging out back west towards eventually Valiki. "One less problem to deal with now.." He muttered.

Calson's trials had only just started. And only now was he begining to realize his true calling. His true test still yet lay ahead

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #13 on: April 01, 2008, 05:01:50 PM »
No more then a day later Calson found himself back in Valiki and again followed a unseen pull to the Cathdrel of Ezra. He was tired from his travels and welcomed the respite the temple gave to him. The sense of unease and guilt he felt always seemed less to him when he came to a shrine or Cathdrel of ezra like this. He still wasnt sure, "...I'm no follower, but yet...why do I come here then?" He thought, then shook his head as he entered removing the hood and hat of his father's that he wore.

He came forth to the altar and laid a few coins on it giving a slight bow of his head to the priests who nodded appreciatively at his actions. Running his hand through his matted hair he took a seat on the front bench cupping his hands against his face. An unsee amount of time passed for Calson before he felt a hand rest on his shoulder. In surprise that he hadnt heard the approach he stood and spun drawing his blade in a swift motion.

"WHOA easy Bolson." A familar voice said as Nell stood there in surprise at his reaction her hands raised in surrender. The action also brought the other priests there to a tense stance waiting though to see what would occur.

Taking a slow breath Calson nodded slightly sheathing the blade then. "...Sorry, I'm just a little tense Nell, from some, recent business." He explained then sat down again. "....take a seat with me if ya wish." He gestured to the bench seat next to him.

Nell did so relaxing and passing the event off as if it had not occurred, and the priests going back to their own business. She then gave Calson a sympathetic look. "Something troubling you?" She asked.

Calson gave a slight shrug. "...I be unsure any more..." He said cryptically.

Nell gave a confused look. "...Do you wish to talk about it?. One of the duties of a Warden is to hear confessions." She said.

Calson thought about it then shrugged slightly. "...Suppose it wouldnt hurt." He said.

Over the next hour or so Calson went on describing what had occurred between himself, the halfling, Luna, and the dark elf. How he had denied Luna mercy, or tried to help her. Yet at the same time feeling justified in what he did. Despite the evils that had occurred. He then went on further to explain his fight in the village with the vrolock striking without pause or mercy.

Calson watched Nell listen giving a fain added word or question here or there. And each time she did he was again struck by her beauty and poise. Despite his guarded nature he felt he could trust her with any detail or information of his life. This realization struck him hard, confusing him. And this showed as well to Nell. "You ok?" She asked concerned again placing a comforting hand on his shoulder.

Calson nodded slightly. "...I am just, unsure about things. Did I do right, were my actions in concert with wha Ezra would want of one of her followers?" He asked.

Nell seemed to think a moment again. "...In the case of the vrolock yes, I believe you did right in your actions. With the case of the elf priest Luna, I belive you should find her and make amends, and atone for what you did. If she accepts your words and deeds in the future then Ezra shall also atone your actions." She explained.

Calson nodded slightly then. "...Very well, thank you for your time." He said then rose to leave. Nell took his arm then stopping him.

"Bolson, be careful, there are many who would want you dead for what you do." She said softly.

Calson nodded slightly. "..Always am, but as you are fond of saying, our paths are laid out before us in Ezra's will." He said

"...Not quite but, close enough." Nell said releasing his arm.

Calson then nodded slightly and put his hood and hat back on heading out into the Barovian night.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #14 on: April 02, 2008, 05:51:02 PM »
Only hours after leaving Nell at the Cathdreal Calson ran into a old companion. Nicolas Adriscu (sp?) a priest of odin with some skill. And another a halfling the three travled north with the last visages of light reaching a small summit area over looking Lake Zarovich to there south behind them. The trio approached some ruins surrounded by mists and a three spaced double line of grave markers. They seemed quite old and worn but Calson through careful close study was able to make out the names of some. "Zarovich?" Calson though surprised reflecting on his face but it was hidden by the hood he wore. Stepping forward to the back left row the ground suddenly gave way under his weight and he fell into a hidden crypt. Landing with a thud.

Calson shook his head slowly looking up quickly to see what was  around him. A faint mist covered the ground obsurcing the floor partly in places but three old coffins were well spaced and seen. "Ah hells." calson said softly slowly edging his longbow off his back and aimed at the coffins.

"Bolson?" Nicolas said sliding down a dropped rope followed by the halfing.

"Shussh!" Calson hissed as he flicked his head to the coffins. "...Dont know wha lays in there."

"Those?...bah proably just dead skeles." The halfling said rushing over and wrapping on it with his hand.

Calson's jaw dropped at the rash action. "..YA CRAZY?!" He hissed. "...Could be vrolocks in there or mummies or something!"

A few clicks sounded as the halfling fiddled with something along the edge of all three coffins. "...Just some traps big guy relax. Sides if they do got vampires in them not like they will all come out at once eh?" The halfling replied confidently.

"....We are so going to die." Calson thought as the halfling roughly pushed each coffin lid open before either he or Nicolas could say another word.

Without pause three pale forms rose from there rest each forming from a half mist like form near the back of the crypts. One of the female vampires seemed to take an interest in Calson. "...ahh food comes to us tonight my sisters and brothers. Let us enjoy the hunt."

Calson didnt wait a moment longer and loosed a burst of arrow shots at the vampires while nicolas held them at bay with his gods calls and the halfling darted about striking where he could. His shots mostly missed the vampires to fast for him to track but slowly his aim grew better and his shots seared the flesh of them.

As quickly as it started the three vampires soon misted back to their coffins. Leaving all three panting heavily. "...Urghh, any bites?" Calson asked downing a healing potion while the others did the same.

"...Not any more." Both replied to him.

Calson meanwhile quickly staked the vampires destroying them forever and removed their fangs.

"Come on! Who knows what wonders and treasure lays inside." The halfling said soon locating a hidden door and dashing through both humans hot on his trail.

"...hin we should get outta here!" Calson said Nicolas nodding in agreement as Calson scanned the area for further threats seen or unseen, or heard.

"Nonsense my good fellow we did just fine with those three how many could there be?" The halfling said.

"...Ezra save us." Calson muttered glancing back to note that the door frame and sealed behind them. "...they know were here."

"..Oh relax." The halfling said. Calson though started to wonder if the halfling hadnt lured Nicolas and him into a trap due to how relaxed he was and how little the vampires previously had struck at him. He had no proof yet but he would keep his eye on the hin.

"Well, either way this way out is blocked, or sealed magically or otherwise. Has to be another way hopefully." Nicolas said.

Calson nodded knocking an arrow. "...Lets find it then. Sooner the better." He replied.

With that the trio set out deeper, the only visable dangers being some carrion bats, wights, ghouls, and a few zombies. "...No vrolocks. You would think a home like these things have here would be swarming with them." CAlson said softly as she lobbed off the head of a zombie. The trio briefly peeked into a room with a blood basin and flurry of coffins but nothing moved and from Calson's senses felt the room was a trap.  "..Sides less tha door were looking for in there be hidden I see no other way out or in sides this door. To easy to get trapped." He said

Moving away and lining the doors edge with holy water and garlic the moved on further. Eventually they emerged into an area with a caged set of chests. The halfling moved quickly to pick the locks and traps easily finding several varities of items inside. "...Oye take a gander here Bolson." Nicolas said holding up a rune encrusted longsword.

Calson studied the blade a moment in his hand slinging the bow onto his back. A sudden hiss from behind him made him spin suddenly with a strike. The blow landed on the shoulder of a female vampire taken by surprise of Calsons quick reactions. Calson saw with a gratified smile that the blade harmed the vampire burning and searing into its cursed flesh. "..Hurts doesnt?" He said drawing his shield now and taking up a fighting stance focusing on the fight at hand.

Between himself and the two others they soon fell the vampire seeing the mist disappear into a crack in the wall deeper in. Finding the area secure for a moment they turned back to the other items. "..Odd the vrolock have things useful against them here. Perhaps loot from other fallen adventurers?" He said.

"Seems that way Bolson." Nicolas said. "...What now?"

"Now? Same as before find a way out." He replied.

Suddenly the ground shook around them and there was the sound of something crashing back the way they came. Rushign back to the hallway leading to the blood room Calson's blood froze. Forming slowly in the hall way were scores of vampires of varying types. "...OUT! NOW! way we came in!" Calson said rushing that way.

As they reached the area where the door was nicolas and CAlson both turned at the slowly advancing forms of the undead. "...Hin...hurry up!..find that door!" Calson said knocking aside a fired arrow at his head with his shield.

Suddenly behind him there was a click and the door opened all three rushed through and then as quickly turned for the coming attack.

Luck though was on their side from the small hole they came down in sun light sprinkled through and bathed in it the trio was safe. "...You shall suffer mortals for what you did here this night." One vampire priest said, in egotistical glee it charged calson while the other seeming older vampires hung back. The fight was brief as Calson bought time for Nicolas and the halfling to climb but the vampire fell dead then at Calsons feet its head missing. Calson though had paid dearly for the time bought and his own wounds were server. The vampires hungrily licked their lips and fangs at Calson's blood lose but held back due to the sunlight. Downing a potion carefully and then quickly climbing the rope the trio quickly ran off down the hill till they reached Constantin's fishing lodge.

They rested for only a few scant hours before resuming their hurried trek back to Valiki. "...Should be alright put some distance between us and them. Guess we'll know come night fall." Calson said out of breath as they now rested in the Ladies Rest.

"Aye Bolson, aye." Nicolas said.

As Calson sat their letting his mind relax a bit he realized one thing. He was growing good at killing the undead, zombies, wights, ghouls. Sure those he could handle. A vrolock that he was prepared for one on one, also proably could handle. But the sight of the number of vampires that he had seen last night were staggering. Far more then even Calson was prepared to admit to. "..I cant do this alone anymore." Calson though. "...but yet who can I trust?"

These thoughts plagued Calson for the next coming few hours. Till eventually his mind came to rest on the solution.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #15 on: April 06, 2008, 07:51:19 PM »
Calson dressed in his dark garb got off the boat that had brought him to midway. He glanced around noting the now noon time sun. After paying for his fare he went inside and settled into a room.

After only a short time their was a series of precise knocks at the door, Calson downed a invisbility potion and edged quickly to the doors side sliding the lock aside and letting it drift open. Just as carefully as Calson had done moments before in came three others. An elven women, Elda, a barovian merchant man who was more then he seemed named Wiltin, and finally a outlander human man named Nicolas a priest of Odin. Elda shut the door behind them and locked it then all three giving the room a careful look over.

"Bolson?" Elda asked.

Calson gave them a moment longer to wonder where he is before nudging a chair to dispell the potions effects. "...Aye lass I be here."

All three turned suddenly at the sound and voice obviously surprised at the skill Calson had with being silent. "...Gods Bolson! I can see and hear the drop of a flea off a dog but even my finely tuned ears didnt hear you."

"...Good." Calson said taking a seat around the small table he had setup for them. "...You were not followed?"

They each shook their heads. "Positive." They said

"...Good." Calson replied.

"So why are we here Bolson?" Nicolas asked.

"...You each have skills tha are of use to me. Elda, your skills with magical effects be useful, as is your skills with spoting others and things. Wiltin ya skills with locks and traps and stealth be useful with more training. And Nicolas ya skills as a priest I have seen are effective in dealing with the undead." Calson explained whispering to each as they all leaned together with their heads only inches apart in case anyone tried to eves drop on them.

"...For what end?" Wiltin asked.

"...Destruction of tha which plagues Barovia the most, the undead." Calson replied.

"...Just us four?!" Wiltin said.

"..Aye, a small group of skilled hunters has a far better chance of doing what I have in mind then a larger public group" Calson explained.

"...So, we are not going to tell folks then?" Nicolas asked.

Calson shook his head. "...No we will not, this path will be a lonely one our deeds if possible shall not be seen or heard of by others. Rarely will our efforts be rewarded in material value. The destruction of the undead the vrolok in particular and the knowledge we save many lives shall have to suffice." He said. "..To this end we need to cover our activities with other trades, I would like each of you to take up such a trade, for apperance sake. and to allow us to gather more gold for supplies."

Each nodded having agreed to the task of joining Calson. "We're with you then." Nicolas said and shortly after Wiltin and Elda added their own confirmations.

"..Good." Calson said taking out a variety of bags and giving each person several varitiy of items for their use. Each took them with surprise some of the items seeing quite rare and valuable.

Over the next several hours the group laid out their coming plans for the next several weeks. "...Gather information, watch others, gather gold and supplies." they each said with a nod.

"Good, we shall meet here with in a weeks time then to catch up on what we have seen or discovered or found. If something important comes up before then notify each of us through the use of a business letter speaking of wishing to meet to discuss business, do not include where or when though." Calson explained getting a nod from each.

After they had left Calson sat in the chair in the room and left out a heavy sigh. In truth he felt bad knowing that for now he would have to keep this from Nell, he did not like that though and it ate away at him. "...Has to be done, both for her safety and others." He muttered in balok while rubbing at his empty eye socket.

The coming week would be far busier then even Calson would have expected, and with in a short time the four hunters would soon find themselves put to the test.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #16 on: April 11, 2008, 12:42:15 AM »
Days later the now four undead hunters were gathered in the forests south of valiki. It was clear from all faces a curiousness on why they were here. Calson carefully eyed Wiltin, Elda, and Nicolas. "Ya's each got yas strength and weaknesses, for our task at hand we need to know each and every last one of our strengths and weaknesses." Calson said studying each and keeping his words vague in case any were to be listening.

Over the next several hours each person of the group shared what they knew about themselves. How they operated, and how to meld those skills with the others. Calson felt a group pairing was in order for this first meeting and divided them up. "Right then, Elda ya with me. Nicolas and Wiltin ya two together. If'n it comes to a fight ya watch the others back." Each nodded at his words. Calson took out a series of scarffs from his pack then. "...First order of business being able to fight in darkness or if'n ya end up blinded." With that he tugged the scarffs around Wiltin's eyes then Nicolas's. "....Elda and I shall put some distance between yas two we shall then strike with the training weapons ya counter with yas own." The two blinded men gave a nod and prepared themselves.

Taking oppsite directions Calson took Nicolas and Elda Wiltin. As each closed in each made a conscious effort to remain as silent as possible. For Calson it was like a second nature to him, and he could tell Elda was keen on that as well though not to the extent he was.

With a sudden burst then each pair engaged the other. Nicolas surprising Calson by fending off quite a few of his blows and giving equal in return. Elda took Wiltin almost completely off guard though landing several blows before the young merchant traveler regained his bearings and struck back. Though Calson could tell he would need further work. After the excersie they exchanged the scarffs and repeated the excerises. Wiltin wanted to try his skills on Calson and Nicolas on Elda instead of the other way around.

Both men came in alot nosier then Calson would have liked though he could tell Wiltin was trying at least. Nicolas in his heavier armor proably lacked any graceful sklls of stealth. "...Going to be a problem in sneaking missions." He thought.

At first Calson was easily able to fend off Wiltin's blows but then the man did something he had not expected. That being backing off and quickly climbing a tree before using his weight to smash the limb into Calson's line of focus. The move caught him off guard and left his defense's shattered and open to attack. To which Wiltin took advantage and laid down a series of blows that surprised the man.

Sitting back against the tree then each covering a vantage point they discussed what the had seen and felt during the excersise. And how best to devote there skills to fighting their common foe. "...We agree tha Wiltin's use of a crossbow, and Nicolas use of his axe are solid when put together. As are my own sword and bow combinations when coupled with Elda's magics, and bow usage yes?" He asked

All three nodded in agreement. "...Alright, good. Next order of business. We are gonna need supplies, and gold for usage in a variety of ways as I'm sure yas can all agree." He said to which each nodded again. "...To tha end we each need'a search the areas throughly for anything we can use. Elda, Wiltin, ya two I think are best suited to more lighter work. To tha end I want each of yas to pair up and tackle the Zeklos crypts, and Moringlordians crypts least the upper areas there. If'n yas can get a few others tackle the lower areas. Nicolas and I mean while will tackle the monastary to the south of here and the lower areas of the morninglordian crypts."

Each gave another nod slightly but Calson could tell Wiltin was nervous. "...Listen lad I know ya still new to all this ya wanna back out now ya can." he said.

Wiltin shook his head. "...No no I willl be fine, its just..." He trailed off.

"...Just wha?" Calson replied.

"...I've never done this kind of stuff before always been a loner." Wiltin said.

"..I know wha its like but think of it this way a lone wolf dies sooner then one tha sticks with a pack." Calson offered. "..it learns from the pack and grows stronger. Tha's wha I be doing here with yas."

Wiltin nodded then. "...Yes of course Bolson." He said

"Good we'll meet up later then shortly after nightfall yas all keep safe till then." Calson said as each took off in there own directions for there own tasks. Calson for a moment caught himself watching elda as she left. He felt that odd rush that he normally got when seeing Nell. As he watched her dart among the trees away from him. He saw for the first time she moved with an elquent grace and beauty, it was quite exotic in a way. He shook his head then moving in his own direction. "...Focus, there be things to do." He though.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #17 on: April 11, 2008, 01:53:38 AM »
As night fell Calson found himself in the moringlordian temple in the outskirts. Already there were Wiltin and Nicolas, and shortly after he entered so to did Elda. They each explained pleasantries then moved there separate ways, not wishing to cause attention to themselves more then necessary. As Calson sat idly moving an arrow shaft in between his fingers his keen hearing picked up movement behind him and the soft clicks of well worn boots. Snapping his head in that direction he saw coming up behind him a dwarf carrying a variety of goods. None of which interested Calson, he had everything he needed but for apperance sake he inquired. "Fraid not lad." The dwarf said to Calson's inquires.

"...Right." He replied then eyed the crypts stairs.

Suddenly there was a darkness sweeping over the stairs and the Light carriers tensed. Calson shot a quick look to Nicolas, Elda, and Wiltin who each took up flanking positions as they had discussed earlier. Nicolas warding each of there minds from evil, and Elda, Wiltin and Calson each aiming there ranged weapons at the stairs, content for the moment to let the carriers take the forward positions. Nicolas too joined the carriers at the front and Calson adjusted his aim accordingly.

Coming slowly up the stairs then zombies of varying types slowly rose. The carriers and Nicolas went on the attack as the other three fired bolts and arrows. The handful of others in the temple also joined in in their own ways and for a moment the ensuing fight dwindled to chaos. As the dust settled down and the last zombie was shot down by an arrow from a variety of differing directions a calm settled over the temple. The four came together then whispering to each other.

"...We press back?" Wiltin asked. To which each gave a nod looking to calson for action.

"...Aye. Standard formation and deployment. Pair up and watch each others backs." He said

Gathering themselves they went below Wiltin and Elda firing bolts and arrows while Nicolas and Calson held the line forcin back another wave of undead. The ensuing fight was fierce as before the restrictions of the halls though prevented the zombies from using there numerical advantages. "...Less they can get behind us." He thought. The area near the stairs clear for the moment in both directions Calson spoke up to teh other three. "...Wiltin, Nicolas, head left and circle the outer halls. Elda and I will sweep the right wing and meet you in the center." All four nodded and took off. A handful of others slowly trickling down to join the four each following the other two groups as they felt fit.

The ensuing fight was brief and soon the upper areas of the crypts were secured. Calson reloaded his bow with another arrow eyeing the steps down. The group of others that had joined them were not quite as experienced as the other four were. And would not listen to there suggestions of tactics. As a result they were far more beaten up then the four and had decided to leave for healing. "We waiting for them?" Elda asked.

Calson shook his head already picking up the movements of more undead below them. "...No, we press on." With that Calson rolled three vials with short fuses down the stairs to the lower levels one fire, one holy water, and one acid. Each exploded as expected the pained moans of the undead near by resounding to them above. The four gave no quarter soon fanning out and securing the center room at the steps base. "..Watch the doors melle weapons. Nicolas you and Wiltin guard the hallway there." He gestured to the hallway leading to the bridged area. "Elda and I will remain here to prevent any from sneaking up on you. Ten minutes return or shout if you need us." Both men nodded and took off the sounds of light fighting resounding back to them. But during this time Calson and Elda were engaged by mummies Calson taking point while Elda used her bow. She whistled sharply indicating to Wiltin and Nicolas they were engaged. A short time later another whistle this form Wiltin resounded indicating they were coming.

Calson grunted as he got punched in the gut from a mummy staggering back from the bow he countered with a resounding kick tripping it and then brining his sword down in an arc finishing it off.  Another came forth but its head soon exploded from a blast of divine light, the blow did not slow Calson he just pushed the body away and moved to engage the next. "...Ya buggers gonna be turned back, I swear it." All Calson got for his words was a groan from the mummy warrior. "...Yeah, love tha conversation skills ya got there." With that Calson lobbed the head off.

"SECURE?" Nicolas shouted as the mummy fell and Calson wiped his brow taking in a breath of the foul air.

"..Aye secure over here." Calson replied soon followed by Wiltin and Elda. "...Good work, lets press on for the center."

The center proved even easier for the four luring the mummies out two and three at a time and quickly taking them down soon after dispatching the mummy priest as well. They found a few odd trinkets in the coffins and some gold as well which they stashed away later for dividing.

With the same precison they cleard the surrounding areas of the tombs and then the caves. Glancing up the rope leadin to the farmlands Calson nodded. "..Good work up yas go." He said

First Wiltlin, then Nicolas, followed by Elda, went up the rope. "Clear?" Calson shouted up.

"...Clear." Elda shouted back. Satisfied Calson sheathed his blade and started to climb. All four were bone weary and tired but satisifed with the efforts they had done. Returning to the temple proper the Priest Bach gave Calson a studied look as he handed over the bags of knuckles the four had obtained.

"...Quite a load here." Bach said.

"..Aye, so it was." Calson replied.

"..You destroyed them all?" He asked

Calson shook his head getting a cocked brow from Bach. "..Nay I didnt destroy them all, had help with my friends here." Calson gestured with a florish of his hand. Toying with Bach's words and clearly enjoying it at the old mans expense.

A grunt from Bach followed by a large bag of healing drinks was given in reply. "...You young folks, no respect for your elders these days." He said in that usual old man way.

"...Oh I got respect for ya older folks. Ya at least do something stead of just standing around here like Zachea did." Calson said getting a few jaw drops from the two carriers.

"...Zachea was a good man Ezrite, dont go dissing his name." Bach said with a harsh glare.

Calson realizing he had overstepped his bounds nodded. "...Fine fine, just saying wha I seen. Glad to be of help Bach." He said then each of the four gave a nod and left the temple.

Seeing the first rays of the sun rising Elda looked at Calson. "..Where to now oh fearless leader?" She said with a sly grin.

Calson stifled a yawn which soon caught with the other three. "...For me...bed. least for a few hours. Meet ya all here later say round noon?"

Each nodded, not realizing the further challenges that would awati them at the next night fall.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #18 on: April 15, 2008, 06:55:45 PM »
The following day was calm for Calson, he spent most of the morning hunting deer and wolves, and a pair of bears. The meats he cooked and donated to the orphanage and charity house in the slums. The furs he tanned with practiced ease and sold them earning quite a fair amount of gold for his work. All except for a few hundred gold he put into his bank account. As they had agreed the four met just outside the Vistani camp to the south of the outskirts.

"...Anything to add?" Calson asked.

All three shook there heads no. "..alright then we're going to go investigate reports of a cave near here that sometimes houses vrolok or other undead." Calson said.

"...What formation?" Nicolas inquired.

"...Standard for the trip there, once there you take point the rest of us will go stealth and sneak near by." Calson said.

"So I am the fish bait then eh?" Nicolas said with a grin. "...Fair enough, not like I could stay quiet in this armor anyhow."

All four nodded preparing themselves as they journeyed past the orphanage. Night time was only moments away. Calson though was not to worried. From all reports he had heard, the caves often were at best a handful of wights, or ghouls. Only a stray report here or there reported vrolok presense. Still cation was needed no matter what they faced.

With a nod Nicolas blessed them each, while Wiltin, Elda, and Calson took up flanking positions behind him melting into the shadows. From Calson's perspective Elda melted cleanly only briefly he caught the faint wisps of her movement, Wiltin though was a bit more noisy due in fact to his new coming to these tasks. "...I gotta drill tha boy hard." Calson thought as they moved inside the cave mouth.

Moans and groans echoed around then and the stench of death wafted through there nostrils. Coming charging were a group of ghouls not seeming to notice the other three. Nicolas as was planned readied himself for the charge but a hail of arrows, and bolts sent the ghouls sprawling.  The three gave a nod then melted back to the shadows as Nicolas moved forward. Twice more this action was repeated and twice more the ghouls fell without trouble. Leaving the four standing in the cave center examining an odd altar that the ghouls had been working on.

"...Wonder what is or was for?" Wiltin asked.

Calson looked to Elda, "...Elda? Thoughts?" He asked.

She shook her head tracing her finger over a few runes. "...Something evil as best I can tell, seems we---" Elda did not finish the sentence as a blast of light shattered all there thoughts. Sending all four to the ground in a heap.

Calson was the first back to his feet, mainly because he took the least amount of the blow from his further station. Soon after Elda recovered, then Wiltin. Nicolas seemed dazed but soon shook it off. "...Urghh,...what the?" Nicolas said.

"HIISS!!" echoed around the four who had moved into a defensive circle. Slowly gaining form a group of vroloks appeared. Numbering at least twelve strong. Three warriors and a priest were the most danger the rest seeming spawns.

Calson left loose a flurry of curses in balok aiming his bow at the priest. "...Tsk Tsk mortal, come now be reasonable--GAK!" Calson did not let the priest finish firing two arrows in quick succession.

The shots were repeated from all fours melle weapons as the vrolok came at them. All quickly switched to there melle and shield combinations using the shields to stem the charge to prepare. "..URghh..." Calson groaned as the warrior vrolok came at him trying to rip out his throat.

The ensuing fight was one of the heaviest of Calson's life. And as they had trained all four fell to there defensive pairings. Nicolas called down Odin's blessings while Wiltin held the line covering him, parrying away a blow from a spawn's attack. "DUCK ELDA!" Calson shouted swinging without giving her time to react, luckily her combat reflexes took over and she rolled to the side. Calson taking down the warrior that meant to cleave her head off.

"AGRG!" Witlin cried and calson saw him go limp off to the side struck down by a savage blow from the second warrior. The warrior had not bitten him just struck him down and tossed him to the side for later. "HISS!" He bellowed and charged Calson.

A searing light from Nicolas staggered the warrior and gaze Calson the few scant seconds he needed to finish the job. "PRIEST!" Calson shouted. "...I'll cover!"

"EURHG!" Elda cried in pain as a draining attack caused her to stagger back coughing blood before slumping to the ground.

Again Calson cursed backing up against Nicolas who took the pause in the fight to heal Calson and his own wounds. "...Not exactly as we had planned eh?" Nicolas said striking down the last of the spawn though Calson could see the last blow had taken alot out of him.

Calson grit his teeth as he too fended and killed a spawn. Just three spawns, the priest, and the last warrior remained. Seeming to pause and watch the two. Suddenly that pause ended and Calson found himself cut off from Nicolas by a divine blast which brought the warrior down and the spawns, but a last moment savage blow from the warrior cut him down.

Again Calson cursed feeling the enchantments from nicolas fade from his blade. Though crafted to harm the undead without those blessings Calson knew his coming job would be hard.

The priest just stared at Calson bearing its fangs. "...Give up mortal, surrender." The priest said charging Calson without waiting for a reply. Calson's shield blocked it claws of the vrolok and he was able to counter with a blow of his own sending the priest backing up a moment. "Give up! You can not hope to win against me alone!" The priest tried using a gaze charm on him but Calson shook it off averting his eyes at the last moment.

This averting though left him open to attack and the blow sent Calson sprawling having been thrown behind a coffin. "...Where that come from?" Calson idly thought as he got to his feet.

"...You can not win." The priest said again. But Calson had one last card to play. Reaching into his boot he pulled out a scroll that the Toret had given him. It was only able to be used by a knight or paladin of Ezra, but it was all Calson had left. "...Ezra, hear my prayers, grant me your blessings and the use of this scroll. Let me save my friends from a terrible fate!" Calson stood chanting and focusing on the scroll. The scroll faded to dust in Calson's hands and for a moment he thought it had not worked. The priest hissed at him seeming to sense victory. Then with a sudden divine light Calson's blade imbued with holy energies. And a wicked grin crossed his face as he eyed the priest. "...Thank you EZRA!"  He said leaping over the coffin and delivering a savage kick to the priest sending it to the ground. Following up with a variety of equally savage blows the priest soon turned to dust. Calson then went to each coffin, which to him seemed to have come out of no where, and swiftly staked each vampire inside. All of which turned to dust afterwards.

With heavy effort Calson rigged a sled and carried his fallen companions to the Cathderal of Ezra at the Zeklos Estate. Paying out a hefty sum of all there gold each only having a scant ten to twenty some gold left. Each of the three left out a soft groan, Calson finding himself supporting Elda's head in his arms as life was once more breathed into her. Softly he brushed a slightly bloodied lock of hair from her face. "...Urgh,...wha.." She got out.

"...Welcome back to the land of the living." He said looking down to her with a slight grin.

"...Bolson?" Nicolas said having now moved to a sitting position against the one pillar.

"...What happened?" Wiltin asked now also in a similar position.

Calson quickly filled each in on what happened. "Guess we need more training huh?" Wiltin said.

"Aye we all could do with more training, however considering how well we did for being taken off guard like tha as well facing such strong numbers. We did very well. Far better then I woulda thought. None of us woulda survived tha had we each not given our all. And it was only by Ezra's grace tha I was allowed to bless my blade with tha scroll tha  I was able to overcome tha priest. Otherwise well..." He trailed off shaking his head letting each fill in his sentence in there own way.

"...Vamprie food." Nicolas said each giving a nod.

"So what now?" Elda said getting to her feet with a hand from Calson to which she gave a nod.

"Now we melt back into the shadows of Barovia for a while, after this lose we need to regroup, retrain, replan, and reequip." Calson said.

The four stayed at the temple the rest of the night resting on the cots. No one spoke to the other each content to remain with their own thoughts on what had happened. Calson spent most of his time eyeing the sword of Gabriel, admiring its keen edge, and clear enchantments. "One day I will prove myself worthy to wield you, or fashion one like you." Calson thought.

Come morning the four each went back to Valiki and went their separate ways. Sometimes being in the right place at the right time can make all the difference. To some that is being a hero, to others, like Calson. It was just doing what had to be done. Come night fall he would put that saying to the test.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #19 on: May 28, 2008, 09:57:49 PM »
That night Calson sat alone in the morninglord temple in the outskirts. He was there just observing, he was asked at times to lend aide below to which he agreed. Coming back up he heard words that a werewolf was outside, a quite large one. As well as a vrolok woman had attacked near deganway to the south. The folks in question were fine but just shaken. Calson went into the crypts again saying he was going to patrol, he secured himself in a side room and quickly changed into his stealth gear, and downed one of his many invisbility potions. With uncanny stealth and silence he moved outside, noting the large werewolf. He didnt so much ming the werebeasts, sure they harmed others, but they could be cured if they could be caught, undead though were only 'cured' by there destruction. Silently Calson noted that the werewolf was mauling a fellow Ezrite. Calson raised his bow to try and take a shot at it but realized it was futile. The Ezrites legs were almost useless, and giving away his position was pointless. So Calson watched and waited to jump down to rescue his fellow companion.

The werewolf left them losing interest, or perhaps scenting something else. Calson readied to jump down but just as he was about to sling the bow back over his shoulder, a woman apperaed out of no where form a mist form. "VROLOK!" he thought aiming quickly and knocking a special electrical arrow, thoguh in his haste is first three shots were fire arrows. Calson was hurting the vrolok woman but not fast as he would have liked. His following fourth and barrage of shots were the orginal electrical ones he wanted. And because of his quick action the vrolok woman couldnt have fed on his Ezrite companion. As the woman hastily loooked around for the source of the pain arrows he noticed her face and anger flashed through Calson. "TATANYA MARKOV?!" He snarled in thought reconizing her face from a previous meeting. Finally she shifted to mist form and headed westwards. Considering her injured state he was not sure if his arrows had caused her to shift due to 'dieing' or because of needing to escape. In either case Calson jumped down off the cliff retriving his fallen comrade and taking him inside. There Calson passed himself off as some random Barovian, then left in the direction of where Tatanya had gone.

From what he had learned she was a messenger for the Zeklos nobles, and it was certainly possible that her coffin laired there. And so over the next several weeks, Calson secretly examined what areas of the Esate he could, coming close to being caught one or two time but always escaping away into the shadows.

Over further investigations with his hunter groups the four tracked down any rurmors of where she had been or who she had interacted with. They never were to engage the vrolok woman directly, but investigations did expose her publicly through their efforts, making her task all that much harder to remain hidden.

One evening as Calson was nearing the Zeklos tombs he saw and reconized a pair of figures running by carrying a body sized bag. "Tatanya and..." He frowned, reconizing the voices of the Vardo Captain Danielle. He thought. "...So...the vardo, or least there captain is helping this vrolok, and possibly other undead? I gotta tell the others bout this." Stil though Calson had to know who that woman was in the bag, downing another invisbility potion to mask himself and blessing his stealth movements from Ezra he moved on and was able to sneak past the door guards just as it was closing. There Calson waited for several hours as the two went upstairs. Calson was tempted to follow but, the worry of getting caught up there with a vrolok and a woman he knew had a good chance to spot or hear him stayed his motions for now.

Days later he learned that the woman he had seen was the magic user Melanie, and that her remains had been taken somewhere. Calson and his group spent the following many days scouring across Barovia's deepest areas to search for the remains. For Calson it was of many reasons, one was to maybe save the woman, who he owed for information she had given him at times. Two she was to be or was married to a friendly knight named Elsin. And Calson had said he would do all he could to find her remains if he could to his friend. Thrid was the worry that the vrolok tatanya would turn Melanie into some form of undead slave. And considering her knowledge he couldnt risk that. Finally though after a total month of searching the group admitted there was no finding her.

Now sitting in Deganway the four sat in silence around a fire softly speaking. "...It was a shame we couldnt find her." Wiltin said with a dejected sigh.

Elda sighed in reply, over their travels she and Calson had grown close friends, and maybe given time there was a chance for more. "...We did all we couldnt didnt we?" She said looking to the others.

Calson and Nicolas nodded.  Calson speaking. "...Aye we did, we searched everywhere we could get to, did some good in fighting the undead too but, we gotta admit we cant find'er." He said

Nicolas then spoke. "May Odin bless her soul and remains where ever she lays, and may she find peace in Vahalha"

Wiltin and Calson each intoned a silent blessing from Ezra in similar respects, and Elda said a prayer in elven as well.

The group had learned something though over the past two months, being in the right place at the right time may get you called a hero. But to Calson, hero's didnt exsist, they were just names people placed to those that knew how to defeat the danger that was faced. But Calson would soon learn, that you cant always run from the pride others give you, and sometimes have to sacrfice it all and suffer much because of it, the question though was, how would it effect the hunter inside? Calson would soon find out.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #20 on: May 31, 2008, 01:31:19 AM »
Calson was up in the Ghakis mountains, having left the other ezrites after there trip up there to deal with Doctor Paynye and his monster creation. It was summer in Barovia at the moment but, even up on the high slops and trails of the Ghakis it was quite cold. Calson was not sure why he had come back up here. He had dealt with the various cultists that had ravaged the town up here, but beyond that he could find no reason to be here.

Calson sat down on a rock nearby off the beaten path. He felt drained and tired. The previous week he had been up on the Baratak's hunting some undead, and wolves for tanning later on when he came across a vrolok attacking an elven woman. The snows though had blinded his one good eye, the other having been lost earlier from an attack by an undead caliban that Elsin had later told him was called DeathTooth. There was a chanting he thought as well before a odd fog decided over his mind but past quickly. The snow cleared and Calson felt his heart freeze up. There was what seemed to be Elda in the grasp of the Vrolok. She was as best Calson could tell dead in it grasp drained of all life blood.

Calson took a shot with his bow intent on the Vrolok's destruction for doing what it had done to such a close friend of his and companion. "NO!" He raged firing arrows off as fast as he could reload, scoring hits but eventually the vrolok vanished in a invisbilty spell, and despite Calson's best efforts, he lost them in the snow.

Now a week later Calson sat on the rock he did now, tired, emotionally and physically. He had mostly alone been searching for his friend. But turned up nothing. Calson was drifting back into his orginal form of being alone and anti-social. He was snappish and stood away from others. He hugged the shadows like one would a close friend or lover. "...Like Elda...given time." He muttered and sighed. Feeling a cold wind slash ice shards across his face, but Calson didnt care. Even those of his group didnt know about Elda, he didnt have the heart to tell them. Now here he was alone, set on a foolish quest for someone who was proably already dead "...Or worse..." He thought. And Calson prayed to Ezra with all his might that she was dead, not something worse then death. "...Please Ezra, grant me this, more then anything else grant me that she is dead and rests peacefully in your grace....please." He said softly in prayer. As so often except in the dire needs Calson felt that emptiness inside him, especially now since what seemed like Elda's death had come about.

Standing then pushing aside his emotional feelings Calson allowed himself to become as cold as the frigid air around him, as he glanced around he noticed higher up bits of food and skin laying among the snow. Calson's sense of curiosity was peaked and he followed the path for some time. Eventually he ran into a group of shadows, quite strong, and was forced to fall back. As he gathered himself to press on more steathly a figured cloaked in dark robes came by. He assisted Calson for a moment dealing with the shadows then downed a invisbilty potion waving as he took off. Calson did like wise curious as to what was going on.

Careful planning and choice of route eventually found Calson back at the peak of the Ghakis where the group of Ezrites had been only a scant few days before. This time though Calson found much more.

In the area just below was the slowly rising form of Regno the ghoul, and a dead woman who Calson recognized as the waitress lady Lorea. She was badly mauled proably by Regno. The same black robed man stood being worshiped by Regno as an 'angel' "Fat chance of tha." Calson thought as he stuck to the shadows. As he hugged the shadows like a second skin Calson slowly realized he recognized the voice of the man who had raised Regno, and summoend a demon as well as other darker arts. "Vasham?" He thought frowning some.

Calson eventually with patients watched as Vasham left. He toyed with the idea of attacking Regno but knew it was a futile gesture. Though strong and skilled Regno it was known had many dark gifts. So with careful work Calson rescued Lorea when Regno was in his dark prayers and with two days hard travel brought Lorea back to her husband Lucien in valiki. Folks called him a hero because of it, Calson hated the title. He wasnt a hero, he just had been in the right place to get to her. And sides he argued. Heros' would have fought Vasham and Regno even knowing it was hopeless. "I ainta hero, nor ever will be," He said to Lizuca. "...So top callling me it got it?" he said the last part in a bit of a snappish tone.

It was so hard that it mad Lizuca back off from him. "..Sorry lass, I'm tired and...have had a rough few days and weeks, excuse me then." He said not even waiting for a reply, turning and leaving.

Over the following few days folks kept asking Calson to help them with some problem or another. He did of course, not because he wanted to but because he needed more information. It kept his mind off the thoughts of suicide that had crept into his mind at times. "Not like anyone would really care if'n I did end my life." He muttered now around Midway after hunting some wolves and worgs. Instead of harvesting there skins like he normally did Calson left them to rot in the fading sunlight.

Hearing the snap of twigs behind him Calson spun on edge drawing his runed longsword and slashing at whoever was there. He felt the sword cut into the person coming from the bushes. Then drew back, realizing who it was. "..Ah hells..." he said then cursed in balok.

Calsons's journies had taken him far and wide across Barovia, he had seen good friends rise and fall in his short few years. But what he was going through now was only a taste of things to come, yet happiness loomed through that pain. Only question was would Calson accept it?
« Last Edit: June 04, 2008, 09:53:33 PM by Ryltar/ Robert Archer »

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #21 on: June 12, 2008, 09:38:12 PM »
"Damnit lass" He calson noting the elf forest walker Arvenien who had stumbled back as the blade had cut into her shoulder. Calson moved forward before she could react and healed her wound. Arvenien was a good friend to him. One he had known for many months since her arrival in Barovia.  She was a friend in a way but nothing more. He didnt understand her ways of the forests nor her reasoning of balance to the land.

Tending the wound he stepped back retrieving his runed blade from the ground and sheathed it. "Arvenien I've told ya before bout sneaking up on me." He said with a hint of annoyance.

"You got finer earing then most elves I know, Bolson." Arvenien replied shrugging off the mistake.

"Wha ya doing here?" He asked.

"I was trying to find you to be honest." She said.

"Why?" He said now walking down the Slavich road and leaning against the rocks. It was early morning and only was about an hour or so past sun up. Even still Calson didnt let his guard down.

"I missed your company? Your an interesting man? I trust you like few others?" She said in turn. "...and...I heard about what happened to your friend. I thought maybe you might need company or least a friendly ear to talk to." She offered leaning opposite him.

Calson shrugged. "She's gone, I've accepted tha. I'll move on." He said his tone though held out hope that she wasnt dead and that he might find her. Arvenien picked up on this her own tone masked somewhat.

"Then....lets find her. One way or another I will help you after all you have done for me." She said. And it was true Calson had done alot for her, from saving someone she had loved at the time. To supporting her and offering his consul when that same man said he would have nothin to do with her, to saving her life from a week long torture from orges further east.

"Alright..." calson said simply. And allowed Arvenien to take the lead with her closer connection to the land he could hope to have.

Over the ensuing weeks and soon month and a half of travel. The two renewed there friendship. They had scoured areas of barovia few traveled. Fought side by side together to overcome the dangers there. Calson learned a few more thigns about undead and to a lesser degree neuri or werebeasts as outlanders called them from Arvenien.

Now though after all that time searching almost non stop the two were staying at an old abaonded inn a few hours from Midway. Calson secured the area and soon got a firing going. Arvenien mean while had started a dinner for them to eat from the vegtables she had gotten on there trips.

Calson came back down, Arvenien had also changed into a more relaxing set of clothes. For someone of the forests they were simple and plain though showed off much of her body. As someone of the forest would know to attract a potential mate. Calson got caught by her beauty his own mind racing from a connection the two had devolped through the travel and fights.

During the travels Arvenien had tried to move things closer but Calson had stead fastly refused. Still she tried, widdling slowly away at Calson's resolve and hope that they would find Elda. Calson finaly tore his gaze away, though he was farely certain Arvenien had caught him staring. She said nothing though just stirred the stew of vegetables she was making.

Calson stared at the fire silently in thought. The connection that Arvenien and he now shared was as close, if not closer then what Elda and him had. Arvenien had often asked him at times during their nightly rests. "Do you love her?" Say do as to leave it open for his hope that they would find her instead of saying 'Did you love her?' Calson never could answer it. Because he had never really felt love. His heart had always been kept closely guarded. Allowing feelings to override his judgment in a fight could be fatal. Making a choice to save a loved one over someone who could better be healed in a fight or saved. "Its always a course of strengths and weaknesses. Balancing the lives of one for the lives of others." He said softly staring at the fire.

"What?" Arvenien asked carrying two small bowls of the vegtable stew over to the small table they had setup.

Calson sighed. "...Nothing, Arvenien. Just trying to sort out my thoughts." He said turning and sitting down, the two planned out where they should search next but between them they couldnt really think of where to go. Finally though Arvenien sat the plate down and turned gently serious on Calson.

"Bolson, look we've searched for close to two months now, you've searched for three counting these two. Dont you think its....time to move on?" She said the last part softer. "You know I will help you no matter what you decided, but look at the facts less we go outside Barovia, there is just about no where else to look."

"We've not searched the Castle" He said though even Calson knew that was just grasping at straw , there was no way she was in the Castle. To which Arvenien replied just at his thoughts.

"Bolson, be realistic, you've never not gone somewhere or done something without rationally thinking about it. Do not start now." She said gently putting a hand tentivly and proably testing to judge his reaction on his hand giving it a faint squeeze. Calson didnt return the squeeze but didnt pull away.

He sighed some staring at his own empty plate now. "Ya right Arvenien." He said moving to the fire again.

Arvenien moved up lightly behind him and hugged him from behind. Calson felt the emptiness tug at him, during there trip and searches when they rested. Arvenien had made many attempts in the past few weeks to get closer to him, usually at night. Or sleep closer to where he did. In each case he had refruited her advances. Each slept alone close enough to defend the other if need be but not enough to share the warmth their bodies offered.

This time though instead of pushing her away of something similar, Calson insted clasped Arvenien's hands with his. Again she said softly resting her head on his back. "...Its time to let go Bolson, its time to move on." Sensing his discomfort though she let go putting a supportive hand on his shoulder. Calson in reply placed his own hand on hers.

He simply said in deep thought. "...We should rest. Move on for Valiki and hunt some wolves come morning." He said, not saying that he was giving up the search but also hinted that he considered what she had said.

"Do you love her?" She said softer looking onto his back that was covered in the armor he now wore asking the same questoin she had as every night for the past four weeks.

Calson sighed softly and started to quietly clean up the dishes they had used cleaning them off. "Be with me tonight?" She then said even softer watching him work as she moved for the stairs up to the small bed room upstairs.

"Good night Arvenien, I shall wake you when your shift comes." He said as she went into the room, and he took up a guard position where he could hear and see what went on inside the room and the hallway coming to it. Leaving Caslon to his thoughts.

Calson had found that pain and suffering are hard to bare alone. But also that with friends it can be overcome. Given time more would come to him, but as of yet, Calson had one more choice to make. What it would be he would soon find out.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #22 on: June 23, 2008, 01:01:26 AM »
A few days later Calson and Arvenien had come back after a few hard days travel of hunting wolves and deer to rest once more at Midway. The two sat in the corner of the small bar eating a small meal and relying there own thoughts on the recent hunts of the past few days.

"The werewolf packs are getting stronger Bolson." Arvenien said.

"Aye, and the various undead too, as I'm sure ya noticed too." He replied

The two were like opposites in some ways, Arvenien hated werebeasts almost as much as Calson hated the undead just as the other had a equal lesser hatred of the others hated foe. Yet those same opposites made the pair quit effective in there fights when it came to those creatures.

These thoughts caused Calson's mind to drift once more, recalling during there fight how Arvenien moved with a fluid grace and beauty. It stirred something inside him that he was unsure of, yet this time he didnt push it away instead for once in his life. Calson made the decision to try and become more then what he had done all his teen and young adult life. Instead of focusing solely on himself or his fight against the undead to help others. He decided to explore his own feelings. To see where it would lead him.

"Bolson?" Arvenien asked shaking his hand some gently.

"Huh? oh aye sorry, Guess I got lost in thought somewhat." He said to Arvenien.

"You thinking about her again?" She asked him implying Elda.

Calson shook his head. "..No, wasnt tha.." He replied

"Then what? If you dont mind me asking." Arvenien asked leaning back some and in a clear show of effort that wasnt lost on Caslon showed off her ample figure and curves, which she in turn took note caught Calson's interest and eye.

"Its just I was thinking bout wha ya said before, bout moving on." He said, shaking his head some to clear his gaze away from her body and back to her face, but even there he was caught staring some. "...ya and I we've searched all over in every place tha we can..." He said taking a sip of his water. "...and...I'm ready to do tha."

Arvenien smiled and leaned forward again to ends Calson's clear torment of her looks with a happy warm smile. "I'm glad to hear that, and you know I am sorry for Elda's lose, even if she was my main source of competition for your attentions..." She paused putting her hand on Calson's. "...and your heart."

Calson smiled some at her words. "..Perhaps, look I'm not sure wha else is down the road for us, or in our futures. But I do know I wanna travel tha path with ya and see where it leads." He said.

Arvenien again smiled happier at his words. "...I'm quite glad Bolson...I'm very glad." She said moving then sautering by with a slight laugh and dashed out the door. "Catch me then if you can!"

Calson blinked momentarily caught off guard by her actions. He quickly regained himself and showing a dexterous grace that would impressed any of the finest elves quickly caught up with her down the road along the forests edge, having pinned her to the tree.

Arvenien giggled some breathing a bit out of breath. "...So you caught me, now what?" She said slyly and coyly.

"Hmmm, if I recall the few things ya told me bout forest walker rituals, such a hunt usually means the hunter takes what he wants." Calson said with a slight grin and chuckle.

"Mmmhmm..." Arvenien said gazing into Calson's eyes warmly.

Calson just starred back down to her a moment caught again by her beauty, his heart fluttered a bit in a way that was unfamiliar to him but he had made his decision. "This..." He said softly then leaned down and tentivly kissed her as he wrapped his arms about her lower back pulling her close. Calson let his instincts guide him on this matter, and he seemed to do something right considering this was something he had rarely done as Arvenien melted into his hold.

The kiss lasted a brief moment before Calson broke it and started at her. She did likewise up to him. "Be with me tonight?" She said softly and hopefully. "...just...to keep the other warm?" She said not wishing to rush things to be careful of Calson's feelings.
                   
"Of course, we'll take things easy hmm?" He said leading her back to Midway and finding an empty room.

There the two stayed for the night, whispering there thoughts and feelings on their lives in general, there hopes and dreams, and there fears. Each listened in turn to the other, and each offered there thoughts when needed. It cemented there friendship and relationship to the new level it had reached. Calson only kept the one secret from Arvenien, that of his true name. Everything else she knew.

Eventually the evening wore on and the two slowly drifted off into a content rest in the others arms.

Calson was on a road to happiness now, but there are always rocks along every trail. And more rocks and even boulders would be ahead in time. How Calson would react would soon be seen.
« Last Edit: June 23, 2008, 08:33:47 PM by Ryltar/ Robert Archer »

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #23 on: July 27, 2008, 06:35:40 PM »
A few weeks passed and Calson and Arvenien had recently married in a short and simple but yet lovely private ceremony between the two each pledging their vows and oaths to the other. The night they spent in the others arms was also passionate and full of love for the other and there union. It was on Calson's mind that down the years eventually Arvenien would outlive him many times over. But it didnt seem to bother his elven lover.

Calson shortly the next day had come crashing down from his happiness that he now had to find that Elda, whom he had long thought dead these past many months. He explained the situation to her and she seemed to accept it but he could tell she was still bitter about it. "Who could blame her?" He thought silently.

The days went on and so did life for Calson, he had grown stronger in this travels, able to walk silently with an unerring grace and move with a reflex that would put most elves to shame.

The the day came that made all the troubles he had gone through worth while. Calson and Arvenien had both met down from midway, Calson sensing her torrent of emotions from the close bond they shared. "Love?" Calson asked as he hugged arvenien and gave her a kiss to the cheek. "Everything ok?"

Arvenien smiled to him warmly returning the hug and kiss and leading him inside the small building they had stopped at. There she had sat Calson down and explained that she was with child. At first Calson was unsure how to take this but was happy none the less. It would mean a severe changing of his he did things in his life. Even likely having to give up much of it for his new family. "Would you do that?" She asked him

Calson smiled then taking her hands into his. "For anyone else? No, for ya though aye." He said honestly.

Arvenien smiled and rested her head on Calson's chest her hands resting over his shoulders. "...I'm glad my love..." She said softly, soon drifitng off to sleep in his arms later after they had once more made gentle sweet tender love to each other.

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Re: On the trail of undeath the tale of a young man Calson Adams
« Reply #24 on: August 02, 2008, 01:40:32 PM »
It had seemed like a dream for Calson, he had been so happy the past many months then when the time came for Arvenien to give birth to there child it had been of a demon, one that Calson after a moment snapped its neck and had buried. Shortly after Arvenien had thrown herself weighed down in lake zarovich, though Calson searched feverently he found no trace of her.
 
Now he was alone, hurting inside and out, he had lost everything important to him, his wife, his child, even his faith to Ezra seemed gone, as he could not call upon her blessings. Everything was gone, and he had nothing left to lose. He threw himself at the foes of the Legions, and the places they lurked. The morninglord crypts, the Zeklos crypts, the shadow forests, werewolf caves up along the lake shores, up the mountain sides where the crypts and haunted house dwelt with the undead, to the lair of the vrolok. He threw himself at these places in ernest hoping that he would die and join his wife and love. For some reason he survived these reckless endeavors someone always it seemed came along and aided him some how just enough to survive.

"Bolson stop this!" Sonja said as he stalked down the mountain after coming across him near the spider caves.

"Leave me alone lass..." He snapped.

"Bolson I wont leave you alone, your destroying yourself cant you see that?!" She said hurrying along and grabbing his arm.

Calson spun pushing her off with surprising strength, for a moment he was tempted to slash at her to drive her away, not to harm her just to ward her off from following. "...SO?! I got nothing left sister NOTHING!" He said again in anger barely controlling himself.

Sonja though didnt back down and stared him straight in the eyes. "...You have helped so many, your a damn hero even if you wont admit it! Now let me help you, stop this recklessness." She said having followed Calson to a small cliff face over looking the lake shore and jagged rocks below. She seemed to know what he intended to do and grabbed his arm. Calson made no move this time to stop her. "...Bolson, dont..." She said.

It was so tempting, so easy enough that he could push Sonja away and throw himself over the edge, ending his life, and the pain he felt for his lose. But that was the easy way, and one thing that was always constant in Calson's life was never to take the easy path. No if he was to die it would be fighting the Legions, preferably the undead. He stepped back from the edge much to Sonja's relief.

"Fine, I wont take the easy path, and....I'll try to stop this recklessness." He said, in truth lying partly, he wouldnt take the easy path out but he wouldnt stop his fights though if with others it would just seem less reckless.

And so the few days passed Sonja kept a constant watch on Calson, he didnt care though, he just let her tag along on his journey's she learned a few things from him though, thing she wouldnt have learned other wise. However she couldnt be around all the time, and one evening while Calson was walking along the lake he felt a thud impact his head hard, it drove him to his feet and knees, in the back of his mind he registered the faint hissing sound that he so reconized as that of a Elite female vrolok. "...Hells..." He thought then collapsed letting darkness over take him.