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The Fates of Four

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The Fates of Four

Post  Wynnsaren on Tue Nov 13, 2012 3:38 pm

The sun was giving way to the stars by the time the small band found a suitable clearing in forest to make camp for the evening. Paido had eagerly jumped to work as soon as Sir Thaddeus made the call, and in no time at all a tidy little camp had been set up and a warm fire was crackling away.

Through clouded eyes Wynn watched them. There was no way they could know the affect they would come to have on these lands. There was no way they could know the number of lives that hung in the balance, and while the heavens had not provided her any specific details aside from the strange symbol, she had been given a strong sense of the critical role these four would play. Meeting them only confirmed to her that they could be a powerful force of good. She was pleased that she could aid them in any small way upon their journey, but it was exactly that.

Their journey. Not hers.

A tentacle twitched against her arm, wresting her from her thoughts. The space lion cub, whom she'd affectionately began calling Glas, or Blue in the common tongue, had worn himself right out with all his struggles of the day and now, bandaged up and swaddled tightly, he lay...mostly motionless beside her. Watching her as she watched them. Wynn still had no clue exactly what the creature was or what exactly it was capable of, and while she recognized the danger in that, it seemed an acceptable risk considering from where she was certain the creature had come. A gift from the stars. Now if she could only get Glas to understand that...

The symphony of the heavens crescendoed into her hearing as the white noise of the sun faded away. Never in her life had she seen the canopy of stars through her weakened eyes, but they sang as longingly for her as her heart longed for them and she found comfort in their empyrean strains.

By the time she turned her face back down to earth, she noticed a few curious sidelong glances from the companions. Even Glas was suddenly more interested in watching the tiny motes of light as they circled her head. Wynn was thankful they'd had the chance to judge her by her actions before knowing what she was, but secrets did not garner friendships.

"I need to thank you all," she spoke up suddenly to those around the fire, hoping to break the ice a bit. "Thank you for the trust you've shown me in allowing me to travel with you these few hours and fight at your side, in spite of the strange circumstances of our meeting. I only wish I could stay with you longer."

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Thaddeus Medvyed

Post  Colin Marcus on Wed Nov 14, 2012 7:44 pm

"Are you leaving so soon?" Thaddeus answered in surprise. He winced a little as he realized that he had been one of them staring.

Truth was he curious about this strange messenger. Things she did, things she said were unusually mysterious. Though he was raised better than to pry into whatever secrets she chose to keep, that didn't stop him from looking a bit more obtrusively than he should have.

Between the fifty years since she'd left her father, and those large silvery eyes... he had some suspicions about her origins. He'd heard that Elves had very large iris and pupils, nearly dominating their eyes... but even then, he'd never heard of 'silver' as a common color. And he'd yet to get a glimpse of her ears...

Perhaps half?

"To be honest, Wynnsaren... It's I, who would like to offer our thanks. Both for the warnings and for how you composed yourself in dangerous situations." His mouth tightened to a thin line as he shook his head in confusion. "Situations that I fear will be a mystery the rest of my life."

He didn't like not knowing what was down in that hole. The strange tunnels, the mysterious construction, the feeling of some... 'thing' rooting around in his brain. The knowledge that some higher power felt the need to use his little group was a tad humbling. Though he proclaimed to spread Sarenrae's word of redemption and goal of making the world better for his presence in it... he never expected to gain any 'personal' attention from the goddess. Seeing Wynn practically shine in the moon and starlight, he saw little of Sarenrae in her... Who 'else' was watching him?

Still, unless you have other mysterious messages to pass to hapless adventurers... You are certainly welcome at our fire as long as you wish."
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Zaistrun Garess

Post  Eddick the Steady (XIV) on Wed Nov 28, 2012 11:41 pm

When Zaistrun had heard the speaker for the stars was leaving he let out a slight sigh of relief. He never liked her, not since the beginning. Her prophesies were entirely too accurately fulfilled for him to be comfortable. It just wasn't right. The four of them tied to the land? It should be the three. In what world was he the equal of Paido? The stars don't change the blood. He was a peasant. A halfling! The gods saw fit to make them low to begin with. It just did not make sense.

It was not that he hated the poor man. But he was reckless and weak. It just did not make sense. He was a servant. He thought of himself as a servant. When others treated him as an equal, his very nature would reject it. Zaistrun was sure that Paido even felt the same way. This prophesy had to be wrong. But everything else came true. Once she was out of the picture it would be easier to forget what she said.

"You are under no compulsion to stay. Have you a pleasant journey." Zaistrun decided to make it brief. He was grateful for her aid, but her very presence unnerved him. He did not wish to be impolite though and so it was appropriate for him to at least wish her well. He did wish her well, in fact, well away from here. He thought of her going back to the distant land of Tian Xia, and smiled warmly at her.
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Wynnsaren

Post  Wynnsaren on Fri Nov 30, 2012 6:50 am

"I appreciate your kind words." A bit surprised, Wynn returned the sorcerer's smile that seemed most genuine though it sat awkwardly upon his stoic features. "It may be that our paths cross again one day, for I fear that these mysterious situations that you mention, Sir Thaddeus, have not yet reached their conclusion. Nor even their culmination."

The oracle's eyes flashed silver as she raised her eyes to the heavens, reflecting the light of the moon.

"The symbol I have previously shown you is ever before my eyes. Even now. It is waxing in it's power and influence over the land and therefore...over you. You would do well to heed this warning. Do not idly put today's events aside, but lock them in your hearts and minds for there will come a day when this symbol is made known to you again and you must be ready for it."

Expelling a long, cool breath, Wynnsaren brought her gaze back to the present and back to the four adventurers around her.

"For my part, I will return to New Stetvan and learn what I can without revealing anything of what was found here today. Perhaps Glas will be a useful link. If you ever have need of me, seek me there. I have a small map-making shop on the south side of the city."

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Sarala Medvyed

Post  Sarala on Tue Dec 04, 2012 11:40 am

Sarala watched the map maker as she interacted with her brother and Zaistrun. Ever since she had shown up out of the blue that morning bearing tidings of strange symbols and inextricable bonds Sarala had been uneasy. How could this woman from New Stetvan, one they had never before met, how could she come here knowing so much about their little group. She must have some connections, someone who could have filled her in on the Medvyed siblings and their traveling companions. And the fact that she didn't know who Datzeg was showed that whoever tipped her off only knew about the formation the group had before they had reached the Stolen Lands.

Perhaps this "map maker" was working for someone who wanted information about their party. Maybe it was Cor, her oldest brother, making one last effort to grasp control over their lives. Or maybe it was a sign that Sarala's former "suitor" was seeking her out, perhaps for retribution of his broken porcine heart. The story about the symbol could have been luck, or even a carefully laid trap for them all. Who knew? It seemed possible that there was some other unknown force at work here.

It was true that Wynnsaren seemed honest enough. As Sarala reviewed the facts of their adventure with her nothing stood out that would mark Wynn as a fraud. So either her sincerity was the real thing or she was really, really good at masking her intentions. There were at least a dozen questions left unanswered for each thing that was revealed to be true that day. All the things Wynnsaren wasn't saying caused Sarala to feel like there was something off about that woman.

It was obvious that Thad trusted this mysterious woman, but then Thad trusted almost everyone it seemed. At least everyone who appeared to be good. Also, Wynn was pretty and her brother was a typical male when it came to a pretty face. It was a weakness that Sarala had learned to exploit early on, though since they had grown so close in the past few years she found she didn't need to use it against him as much as she used to.

Yes, Thaddeus seemed to be fascinated with Wynn. Sarala thought that she may have even caught him in the act of innocent flirtation in his query for more "mysterious messages" to be sent their way. Wynn's reply seemed genuinely nice, what with her invitation to her map shop and all. If only she could get a better idea about Wynn's full identity. Sarala wanted to like her. With her skills and knowledge Wynn may be a useful person to know in the future. But the enigma that surrounded the map maker was too much for Sarala's doubtful nature.

She didn't believe what Wynn said about the tie between them and the Stolen Lands was anything of significance. How could it be significant when they were only there on a government sanctioned mission to clear the land of bandits. And they were about half way done with their predetermined section as far as she could tell. Knowing Thad, Sarala was sure that he would want to make good on his word and do something about the Stag Lord, wherever he was, as well as do something about the evil temple of monks, or whatever they were, that seemed to be the spoon that was stirring the pot, so to speak. But after that, what would keep them here in this forsaken place? They would surely have to move on. Possibly spend sometime in New Stetven, as much as she really did not want to go there, then she might be able to find out the true identity of their new acquaintance.

Sarala's eyes moved from Wynn to the blue pup confined in the map maker's bag. Such a beautiful, mysterious creature, much akin to its new master. Its parent had proved to be vicious and dangerous but hopefully the pup was young enough to be tamed. Time would only tell.

"I would be curious to see how your research with the pup... Glas, you call it?... goes." Sarala addressed Wynn politely, "Perhaps, when we finish our job here we will indeed come and find your shop in New Stetven. We may be in need of some maps, for who knows where our adventures will take us."
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Wynnsaren

Post  Wynnsaren on Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:09 pm

"Certainly," Wynn responded with a gracious nod. "If there is any way in which I might further aid you, I would be more than happy to do so. Actually...as to that..."

The oracle leaned over to dig a few things out of her pack, unintentionally giving Glas the opportunity to bat at one of the orbs of light circling her head with it's tentacle. Prismatic eyes flashed blue when the mane/appendage passed right through and it wriggled a bit inside the tight blanket as if in curious excitement.

She chuckled at the creature's reaction and reached over to touch it, immediately sending Glas into a defensive posture. Or as much as it could manage all bound up as it was. Wynn ignored it and slowly reached to scratch behind its tentacles. This would take time...

"I did not come to you with premonitions alone. I have a few things that might prove useful on your journey." From out of the pack she brought a small collection of items. Two vials of potions, two kits, and a small pine box about the length of two hands, very old judging from it's appearance.

"First off, Sarala, thank you for temporarily entrusting me with the healing wand. I believe you'll be needing this back." After returning the wand to the willowy young woman, Wynn smiled and quickly patted her hand. "I very much enjoyed working with you, my dear," she said softly. "It is my hope that one day I will again be so privileged."

Next, she lifted one of the kits and handed it to Sir Thaddeus. "This is what remains of my healing kit. There are about six doses of herbs and a few bandages left, but out in the field, even so small an amount might save a life. Please take it with my blessing, Sir. And these potions as well," Wynn continued, handing the two small vials to the paladin. "Better in your hands than in my pack.

"Then there is this. For Paido." Taking the second kit, she glided over to the halfling who busied himself on the edge of the firelight, brushing down the horses for the evening. "My map making kit. It has seen me through many journeys and I know it will see you through many more."

The glowing sigils on her face cast a soft blue reflection on Paido's as Wynn knelt down and opened the leather kit for him to see. "I've left some instructions in here for its use," she offered in a low voice for only him to hear. "You have done remarkably well for your earliest works and even more so considering you are self taught! It is my honor to have traveled with you today."

Warmly squeezing the halfling's shoulder, the oracle rose and collected the last of her gifts.

She held the ancient box out before her and stood beside the campfire, deliberately meeting each of the eyes of those whom she was addressing.

"Many years ago, in the Hongal province of north Tian Xia, there was a small group of men, two blood riders and two tent makers by trade, who rose to the status of hero among their tribe and indeed many others. Their people had been dominated and both magically and physically enslaved by the vicious oni for many years. The oni being evil spirits, native to those lands, able to take physical form. They are sadistic in their dealings and seek to torment other peoples for sheer pleasure. I am grateful for never having come across one in person."

Wynn stopped weaving her tale for a moment to let the details sink in for her audience before continuing.

"When all hope seemed lost, these four unlikely men rose up against their evil oppressors and led their people to victory and freedom. Four heroes changed the fates of thousands.

"They came to be known throughout the lands as Matsuro Shi. The Fates of Four. Not only did their actions directly impact their tribe, but their story has become legend, inspiring the proud Tian-La peoples to choose their own fates and not settle for those placed upon them. Even today they thunder across the open plains, each man and woman free to chase their own stars.

"And these..." Wynnsaren reverently opened the wooden box, allowing a flood of brilliant light to spill from the cracks before the lid was fully removed. "These are the stars of the Matsuro Shi."

Within the box, resting upon a soft cushion of purple velvet that matched the hue of her cloak, sat four dazzlingly bright, spherical stones.

"These stars were a visual reminder to themselves and to those around them that they were bound to one another by blood and deed. And thus they remained bound until as most things do, they passed one by one from this world.

"Most of of the magic in these stones has faded after the centuries but the stars still fly."

She carefully pulled the first of the stones from it's bed and placed her hand above the head of Sir Thaddeus, where she released it as if in coronation. Instead of the object falling and plunking him on the noggin, the brightly lit stone picked up an orbit over his head, casting a golden radiance upon his face.

The oracle smiled and nodded almost imperceptibly at the rightness of it before giving the box and it's contents to the paladin, then stepping back and turning to the group as a whole.

"I had them enchanted for each of the four of you. I hope they one day bind you as they bound the Matsuro Shi, but at very least, I pray to the heavens that they help to cast light in your darkest hours and remind you of the power of four united.

"Remember that," Wynn offered in closing. She turned back to her gear and began packing it up. "For as surely as your fates are intertwined with that of this land, they are likewise intertwined with each other. This is what the stars have revealed to me, and now I to you."

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Zaistrun Garess

Post  Eddick the Steady (XIV) on Wed Dec 05, 2012 7:14 am

The sorcerer was brought out of his malaise when the new treasure was brought out. Burnt out Ioun Stones fitted with a continual light spell is what they were. But the presentation was so nice, Zaistrun kept his mouth shut about that. Whether these were actually the stones of legend or a clever sales pitch it would be hard to wager, but it didn't matter too much because they were a gift. And a very nice gift, they were.

He had always loved Ioun stones, and the gems implanted in his hands were very similar to them in many ways. He had dreams of getting many of them. He had to leave some behind with his family when he left abruptly, although he did not have any intentions of going back for them now.

But that itself made him stop and consider. How much did Wynn actually know about them? The fact that she seemed to always have them at a disadvantage made him uncomfortable, but at least he could be assured from her combat prowess that she was not terribly stronger than any of them. If she turned out to be an enemy or wish them any harm, it wouldn't be difficult to defeat her. The best way would be to maintain distance, as she seemed to have ironically poor eyesight from afar. Regardless of all of that it seemed that she wished them success. Perhaps a little test would allay his fears.

He addressed her coldly, having regained his composure. "Thank you for your thoughtful gift. I was wondering if you would consider one more thing in reference to us. If you did research into the metals and other strange substances we found, that could prove useful to us. It would be best to remain discreet about it, but since we would not have access to such libraries as New Stetven has until our charter is finished, some understanding of what we are dealing with would be most helpful."

It was likely that if all was as it appeared to be, she was going to be looking into it regardless. She did have a part in it's discovery after all. The quality of her information would be interesting to note and her rapidity would be as well. One could certainly use all the friends they could find, especially with his recent estrangement. If she continued to prove helpful, it could help him overlook her eccentricities about station.

He did the same with Sir Thaddeus after all.
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Thaddeus Medvyed

Post  Colin Marcus on Sat Dec 08, 2012 3:26 am

"Discretion would behoove us all," Thaddeus said in a strong voice. "There are too many questions, and too many dangers. What we found down there... Both the metal of fire and ice... and more importantly those shards that pass through metal? Wars have been fought over less."

He turned his attention back to Wynnsaren and her gifts.

"Thank you for the stones, the warnings, everything... " It was strange getting gifts from an oracle. He battled in his mind just 'what' to make of it. When one saw the future... How much was preordained... and how much just kindness. The idea of one who saw visions giving up ever scrap of healing she had to them was... disconcerting.

He couldn't help but look toward Datzig. He was quiet tonight, perhaps a bit more thoughtful then usual. Thad didn't blame him. Wynn proclaimed the four of them were important and destined for great things... But there were FIVE of them here. Why wasn't the former bandit mentioned at all? If Thad had been the one left out, he was sure his mind would have traveled down dark paths too. He hoped it only meant that Datzig would soon retire to a peaceful life somewhere and not something more grim. He'd buried too many lately.

Noticing her packing the last of her things he frowned a bit. "The nights around here are dangerous Wynn. I have the scars to prove it. Are you certain you don't wish to wait till at least morning before you leave?

"I confess, I'm hesitant to accept the last of your healing kits and potions and then watch you leave on your own..."
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Re: The Fates of Four

Post  Magyc on Thu Dec 13, 2012 10:29 pm

Paido watched the presentation of the stones with rapt attention. He swelled with pride and excitement when she referenced the four of them doing great and wondrous things.

Then doubt took over and he realized she could have been counting Datzig as one of the four.
It was hard to tell as she rarely looked at anyone straight on as she was speaking.

On the other hand, Paido was clearly listed on the charter!

However she hardly seemed concerned with legal niceties when she mostly spoke of cosmic visions.

Best to just beat that pride back down until he was sure.


Regardless, she was very nice and Paido had learned much from her maps. Now she had gifted him some of her tools as well! She had managed to greatly help him serve Sir Thaddeus in such a way that the shame of his first maps was never discovered. For that, he felt immense gratitude and had already placed her within his circle of protection, affixing a loyalty to her second only to the original members of his charter, on par with Datzig. He wished she would stay with the group, but decided not to voice this opinion lest the other members not feel the same.
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Wynnsaren

Post  Wynnsaren on Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:41 pm

Wynn smiled as she stuffed her few belongings back into her pack. Rarely had her sudden appearances and visions been received well, but this group made her actually feel some semblance of normal. Or at least what she thought normal must feel like. In past experiences, some had presented her with gifts and adoration thinking she was something more than what she actually was, and some chased her with torches and pitchforks thinking she was something much worse than what she actually was.

This...simple kindness...as guarded and suspicious as it might be, she found to be a very happy medium and she couldn't help but hope she'd get the opportunity to see them again.

"I have delivered the message given to me and now I am called to return, and while I thank you for your concern, Sir Thaddeus, you need not fear for me, for I will not be making this journey alone." The oracle responded cryptically to the paladin's words before shifting her silver eyes in Zaistrun's direction.

"And as I have said, I will look into these matters without revealing what has transpired here today. Truly, there will be no eyebrows raised when I seek information about this particular subject matter."

Wynn was certain this had something to do with the great tapestry that spread out above them. The strange cold-exuding metal, the crater, the huge, meteoric sphere beneath the ground... It all pointed to the stars and the space between them. Considering her area of interests and the eccentric acquaintances she'd made in New Stetvan, learning more about such things would not raise any kind of suspicion whatsoever. She was more concerned about keeping Glas under wraps...

"If you find yourselves in New Stetvan at a later date, I would be more than happy to share with you what I've discovered. Or perhaps... Perhaps, I may be sent to your side once more. Come either former or latter, I look forward to our next meeting."

She lifted her pack onto her shoulders and cradled the tightly-wrapped space-cub in her arms, then turned to the four of them.

"Until then," Wynn smiled, "chase your stars."

With that, she turned and stepped out of the firelight and into the darkness of the forest. The oracle must have turned back to look at them once more, for they could see her silver eyes reflecting the light from their fire, and the glowing sigils and stars about her head, but suddenly came a chill rush of air that guttered the small fire and then...the glowing lights were gone.

And so was she.

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