In the Mists

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Viewing 15 posts - 76 through 90 (of 115 total)
  • February 22, 2015 at 9:46 pm #1295

    Grey turns just a bit as he calls back to you all, and as he turns back, that’s when you all see him, like a wall of stone blocking the path that leads off of the Founders Watch and up the mountain. What is strange is, it’s not like he just appeared, it’s more like he was standing their the whole time, out in the open but somehow unseen…nor does his sudden appearance startle your senses…it’s as if you knew he was there the whole time, recognized by your senses, but not by your eyes. None of this makes sense, but this is Yunshan, and you are in the presence of a powerful spirit. It’s almost as if Grey’s last word just brought him to your senses.

    In Truth, it is just his leg that blocks the path. He towers 40 ft. high, one stony foot and rocky calve blocking the narrow path forward. His other leg, and indeed the left half of his towering body is phased into the cliff face. His eyes are like cooling embers, black, with the slightest halo of orange, more a shadow or warm color than a light. His features are grey like the mist, but the massive vein of obsidian that runs across his body from shoulder to groin, shines with a dark reflective gleaming.

    Look at the picture, imagine the obsidian stripe across the body. The tallest among you barely comes up to below his knee cap. One massive leg standing on the trail, the other lost in the sheer stone wall that shoots upward. His face looks down, head cocked like that of a curious animal, which seems like a curious kind of expression for such an imposing being to have.

    Meela Bows Deeply, and in a voice that seems too alive, too exasperated and wonder-struck to come from a ghost says

    It seems the mountain has come to us.

    February 22, 2015 at 10:52 pm #1305

    Stern looks to his comrads to see they have all come near. Looks up to old black stripe then kneels to a knee and bows his head in reverance.

    February 23, 2015 at 11:25 am #1306

    Hrothgard takes to one knee when he sees Fang Quiang, bowing his head, and placing one arm across his chest as in a saluting motion of respect.

    “Great Spirit, Fang Quiang…” he says to him in greeting.

    February 24, 2015 at 3:37 pm #1321

    The mountain looks down at your assembled group. You hear his thoughts whisper through the grey, flowing around your minds like water swirling around fixed boulders in a stream, a jumble that seems like the noise of many clashing senseless thoughts at first, and then for each of you suddenly congeals in you mind into coherent ideas and images, something like a voice in your mind, but more a communication.

    Grey, you know he recognizes you as a Threnody, he cannot understand your human sense of loss, yet he protects all those who dwell beneath his gaze, and so to you he extends a sense of protection…almost like that of a father, the closest his immortal stone heart can get to showing such things

    Hroth, he recognizes you have carried out the quest Fang Quiang had him relay those weeks ago before you left to Littlemountain. He extends the sense that he honors the evil you faced alone in battle, and that you have removed the spirit from this world. It is the closest way to convey a congratulations the immortal being can show.

    Then, a sense that almost feels like pride, as a smile grinds over his rocky features. Again a wave of meaning washes over all of you. Fang Quiang hears the whispers of those he watches over. He sometimes picks up their thoughts, when he is not asleep or distracted, he sometimes hears their prayers. They have been praying for you, the people of Fanlu. The whispers he hears from the towns folk say you faced a great evil, stopped it from reaching Yunshan. The whispers say you defeated a powerful wujen…Akiba…he knows the name, and is pleased at this. The whispers say you left town and have not been heard from for 7 days…not a long time, but long for those who have taken you to heart. The prayers are for your safe return…and that the gods guide you. As you perceive these prayers, you begin to hear them in your minds, whispered in dozens of different voices, as if you were privy to all the thoughts, comments and prayers that contained your names or pertained to you.

    You hear the voices of worried mothers speaking about you:
    “Li Na, they saved my children…please, please give them your luck!”
    “I don’t know why my sister ever moved to Littlemountain, but she is alive only because of those strangers”
    “I pray to Fang Quiang to take them in, I will pray for them on the mountain tomorrow”
    “His mother and father helped my grandmother pay for this home..I do hope the lord settles down and has a son, I’d feel safer with the elves back in that manor.”
    “Bring them back safe”
    “They saved everyone in that little village, I’m sure they would do the same for us”
    “The one called Tealia, the one with the great cat, she’s spirit-called for sure…she’s the one who banished the restless dead from the Howling Winds!”
    “What if the Wu jen rise up to take revenge, will they be able to fight them, will they lead them to us?”
    “Guan Yin watch over them”
    “Li Na, please make us lucky enough to have such heroes among us”
    “Things have seemed lighter in the town since the young master of Threnody has returned…it is a good omen”
    “They must have been sent by the gods”
    “I’ve heard before of a golden haired elf maiden in shining armor and her unicorn god, my grand mother told me long ago such a hero saved the Woodsman Woods from evil spirits…it couldn’t be the same maiden, unless she is immortal like a spirit!”
    “I hear the Keeper has blessed them, they must be good, the Keeper has always looked out for our good”

    The voices of children:
    “I hear they bested the heroes of the shadow at scorpion”
    “The one stern is big like a mountain, He’s got a magic black ax he cut through an entire tribe of bugbears in Littlemountain, just chopped them down like trees!
    “I will be a hero like that”
    “They’re calling the one named Caris The Golden Maiden, she’s a girl, but a hero as strong as any. I could be like that when I’m old enough”
    “I want to be Grognak! He throws Fire like a wujen can, but is good like a monk!”
    “You can be Grognak, but I get to be Tealia, shes beautiful and brave and has a heart of lightning!”
    “Please Chu Jung, let me see them, I’ve never seen a real hero up close”
    “The one named Stern rides a horse made of living stone, and can split an ogre in two with one swing of his axe!”
    “Hroth wields a giant sword in each hand and is the strongest man alive! I hope if he ever fights in the Six points father will take me”
    “Don’t worry little sister, no one’s going to attack Fanlu, Grognak blew up a whole tribe of gnolls with one magic fireball! Now they’re too scared of Grognak to ever mess with us again”
    “Girls can too be heroes! Like the elf lady founders! Tealia rides a giant tiger and no one can tell her what to do! I’ll be a hero just like that, You’ll see!”
    “Those blades must weigh as much as me, and he uses one in each hand…”
    “My dad says elves can see the future, that’s why he summoned his barbarian friends, so he could stop Slag!
    “I’ve got two sticks so I get to be Hrothgar! If I hit you, you have to die ok!”

    The Measured voice of men:
    “I heard they left Town last week to finish off Slags whole tribe!”
    “Well I heard the axe wielder saved the Hat Maker’s Family from certain death!”
    “I Know they kept the raiders away, but will they honor the laws? Foreigners once saved the village of Shou Shan when my father was a boy, but then they took it over and killed half the men, including my grandpa.”
    “She controls animals with her mind and changes the weather on a whim, if she likes us, maybe well get better planting season this year!”
    “The Lord of Threnody returned just in time…they swore he reached across the whole village with magic and snatched the children right away from the raiders…the gods are with the lord of Threnody and his friends.
    “A wizard among us would make the wu jen respect us…I say he’s good. It is time for wizards again, wizards that save villages, not take them over!”
    “I only wish I could think her for healing my wife’s burns…I really have nothing to give one such as her”
    “It was a misty night, I was at the tavern…spirit blooded thugs, not from here came to start trouble, they took them on with their bare hands gods bless them! Beat em’ all the way out of town!
    “The wizard fights wu jen, so his magic must be good…?”
    “Evon trusts them….”
    “I spoke with one of the refugees from Littlemountain, they say the big one, Hrothgar, when they rescued the villagers from the shrine, he challenged an evil spirit to single combat and defeated it! They watched it happen from inside the old shrine the spirits had locked them up in! Why after that, none of the spirits wanted to mess with them, only the inhuman bandits were dumb enough to attack them…and look what happened to them”
    “Last summer Ning was burned to the ground by strangers..but these ones must be different, the Threnodys built this town, they must be friends if they are friends of the Threnodys”
    “They travel with a healer, a lady of gold who wears shining armor…I heard she’s an elf, a good 1/2 spirit, like the master of the manner”
    “I’ve heard they’re the ones who exorcised the evil spirits haunting the old monastery down the pass, maybe they are demon hunters too?!”
    “It’s good for our town, we haven’t’ had heroes like that in a long time”
    “Yes the other big one, he’s not just a warrior, a healer too…one of the men from littlemountain swears he brought his wife back from the edge of death…they were held hostage in their house…Stern galloped right through the door on his stone horse and saved the whole family!”
    “I saw her, the Golden Lady, she is more beautiful than they say!”

    You all stand there for a long time,you’re not sure how long, your minds swimming in the thoughts of others, when you are snapped out of it by a deep voice. The voice resonates through the bones of the mountain, speaks as if the whole of the mountain and the ground you stand upon resonated with the vocal chords. He speaks out loud to you.

    What you seek is granted…
    It is their hope.
    The hope you have given my children that pays your way out of these mists now, and back to them..remember always.
    Turn and go, walk down the path.
    With each step, you will be closer to your world.

    February 24, 2015 at 8:44 pm #1322

    “Than you Great One. We are at your service, should you need us. As my Parents before me, I pledge to protect Fan Lu.” a visibly grateful Grey bows and turns to stride back towards the Founders watch and Fan Lu beyond.

    February 25, 2015 at 9:20 am #1323

    DM says last chances to say anything, make comments, before you stroll back down the hill…I’ll give you guys until 1pm until I move on. We do have a little more to go.

    February 25, 2015 at 9:49 am #1326

    Grognak bows deeply in thanks, slowly turns, and walks down the path. Grognak chooses to walk next to Hrothgard whenever he chooses to head down the hill.

    February 25, 2015 at 10:07 am #1327

    Hrothgard, still bowing, speaks softly;

    “Thank you Great Spirit, Fang Quiang. I am forever in your service for all of your help…” (( Dear DM – Hint Hint – Mind made up now with this!! You know what I’m talking about! 😉 ))

    Hrothgard rises slowly, raising his eyes towards the great spirit, still saluting then nodding to Grognak.

    • This reply was modified 5 years, 9 months ago by Hrothgard.
    February 25, 2015 at 12:16 pm #1341

    Stern Rises with his friends in gratitude.

    ” Like my brothers have said, our services will be for the people of fanlu, their hopes and prayers will not be in vain. Call upon us when needed, I am grateful to have been in your presence.”

    February 25, 2015 at 9:58 pm #1342

    He silently acknowledges each of you. His mountain sized voice rolls again…heroes are rewarded….

    Fang Quiang goes to one knee in front of you and bends down, putting one huge fist upon the path and making as if concentrating. Jamba, silent and awestruck this whole time, is behind you all, like a shadow next to an equally awe struck Bren. Obada is on both knees, eyes averted, grasping his prayer beads. A few moments pass and a cloud of 5 small floating objects rise out of the ground in front of the giant’s grounded fist, rising up from some place in the depths of the stone. Each one about the size of a large marble

    Mountain Stars… Fang Quiang breaths reverently, as the raw, uncut emeralds float towards you, one to Grognak, One to Grey, One to Stern, and 2 more float to grey, and you all seem to instinctively know these two are for Tealia and Caris.

    Still on one knee, and still higher than the highest eve on a two story home, Fang Quiang turns to Hroth, repeating some of the word the warrior spoke to him
    Forever in my service…he qoutes the warrior
    Fang Quiang has not servants…you will not serve, but there is stone in your spirit…you will walk with me…stand fast for your reward Hrothgar..

    He raises his huge fist off the ground about 4 ft, then extends a single rocky finger downwards, touching the ground. From the point where it touches, a vein of shimmering obsidian seems to snake across the ground towards Hroth, and as it reaches him it crawls up his armor. The obsidian seems like real crystal for a moment but then becomes translucent and ghostly, sinking into the big warriors armor, as if absorbing into him, until it no longer stirs the surface. Hroth, you feel a slight burn and itching sensation beneath your armor, as if suddenly a rash were spread across your midsection. Fang Quiang smiles down at you, and nods.

    Good…go now spirit warrior, in time you will feel a stirring in the mark, that is when you will return to me, and we shall meet again, but now Go,the way will not stay open much longer.

    And with that, you all feel a sense of completion, as if it is indeed the best time to go.

    As one you turn and, Grey at the front, begin the trek back down from Founders Watch to Fan Lu. Each step you swear it’s as if the ground beneath you feels more solid.

    You have only gone a few yards before you hear from behind in the colossal voice of the Great Fan Quiang,
    At the front of the pack Grey slams suddenly to a stop, rigid muscles taut, in his pale face a look of profound shock border lining terror on his patrician features. The rest of the group has to think quickly it happens so fast, either dodge/stumbling past or stopping in confusion.

    Grey slowly pivots in place, and strides back through your confused midst towards Fang Quiang. Who is standing right where he was. Grey stops the length of a long spear away from the mighty spirit and bows low and long, “Yes, Great Spirit.” The Fan Quiang continues, questioningly
    You have something Son of Aelihir….something familiar… the Protector of Fan Lu trails off.

    Fang Quiang raises one massive hand palm up. Grey’s jacket flies open, as if caught in gale force winds flapping back behind him, and Black Stone comes flying out into the open palm of the great spirit. Grey shocked, struggles visibly, mightily managing to take a step forward arm out to try to catch Blackstone but stops, registering the demeanor of the Dreaming Mountain.

    Fang Quiang holds the human fist sized Black Stone up before him. In his hands it looks tiny. The colossus holds the stone gingerly between a thumb and forefinger that could grind the faceted stone to dust with ease. He inspects Blackstone, turning Black stone this way and that as he leans in to look very close, like a jeweler inspecting a tiny diamond for value, all that’s missing is a massive loop befitting of Fan Quiang. Almost absently the spirits free hand comes to rest at a spot just over his hip, caressing a specific spot on the black stripe of obsidian. With a small chunk missing just slightly bigger than Blackstone. The spirit’s “Hmmm.” of interest resonates across the mountains, reverberating from within everyone, like the crash of a distant avalanche or a fearsome roar of a lion, the bass note penetrates you all to your core.

    When Fang Quiang speaks again it is with a slightly bemused voice, In this moment, the spirit seems very human in emotion…
    I have always wondered what happened to this. Fang Quiang opens his palm letting Blackstone fly back to, a relaxed and relieved Grey’s waiting arms. Fang Quiang’s benevolent voice echoes softly around you all as he fades from view,leaning back and sinking down back into the mountain.
    I like what you have done with it.

    A paler than normal Grey, stride stumbles his way back to the group clutching Blackstone protectively to his chest, eyes wide.
    “Ok, let’s get out of here and back home right now.” He says shakily as he strides by.

    Down the path you head, with each step the mist seems to clear, color drained from the world blushes back into it. The weight of traversing the material world again a welcome strain from the endless weightless haze of the ethereal plane. Each of you holds a green gemstone in your hands, clenched in anticipation…are you really going home…is it done? Hroth has no stone to show, but a warmth in his core, a rash across his body he can’t take the time to pull his armor away and look at just now, and a beaming smile upon his face, knowing something has changed him in just the way he wished to be changed, and yet never knew. You are still high on the path, at the level of a tall roof, looking out across the grassy boulder strew hillside that rises up to meet the mountain. You walk in silence for awhile, as if you are all thinking the same thing..fearing the slightest variation from the spirits command to walk down the path might make his magic void…it’s like holding your breath at the moment of a hard own triumph, unwilling to accept it until it is surely a done deal. The cherry blossoms are in the bright bloom of early spring and morning sunlight. The unmistakable sound of a metal shovel striking rock and gritty sand travels up from far below. The work crew you passed on the road earlier is hard at work, clearing out the drainage ditch along the side of Tradeway. They’re about 150 yards away, and in a strange way, they notice you just after you notice them. They drop their tools in shock, staring up at you in recognition. Their foreman, sipping from a full sized beat up kettle of steaming tea, begins to shout at them, when his vulgar chastisement trails off to silence as he notices you too. Beaming smiles, the kind that can be seen from far off, spread on some of their faces. The foreman waves at you. Two of the work men look back to each other and their simultaneous, tandem cry echoes across the valley. As they call out the foreman looks a little embarrassed, but their enthusiasm is contagious, and the whole crew of 8 men is clapping and smiling. It takes a moment for you to make out what they’re shouting…“Punch Drunk!!!!”

    • This reply was modified 5 years, 9 months ago by DM.
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    February 26, 2015 at 1:10 am #1349

    Stern looks to meela as surely she must be fading with the mist.

    “Thank you. I will honor my promise and look to your decedent’s home.”

    February 26, 2015 at 6:09 am #1350

    Hrothgard feels his armor, even reaching underneath as best he can to feel the skin on his chest as it still itches, even burns just a bit. Not enough to cause pain. Not even discomfort. Just enough to remind you that it is there… but what? What is “IT?”

    Hrothgard looks almost afraid. But he is actually quite calm. Just confused to point of it looking like fear. Calmly he turns to Grey.

    “What just happened, my friend?” He asks Grey, staring intently into his eyes for a hopeful answer. “You, of all of us, might have a better understanding of… what… is happening…” he says now looking down towards his chest, still trying to reach in his armor to look.

    February 26, 2015 at 9:05 am #1352

    DM says: Ok, I moved on to the part where you guys are back without giving you time to react and talk on the way down the trail. Go ahead and do that, as Hroth and Stern already are. I probably should have split that last post into two parts. Play on! Also, decide where you want to go next. The first two people to agree on something will be the deciding factor, as I don’t want to wait too long before we move on.

    February 26, 2015 at 9:12 am #1353

    Grey stalking forward. Turns back to Hroth. Grey’s eyes are still wide, he is obviously distracted and ask Hroth to repeat himself before answering.

    That by friend is most likely the Favor of the Dreaming Mountain. As for how this will impact your life, I am sure it will become obvious.

    Now let us all hurry to look in on lady Sheng’s family and then back to the Manor. We have a lot to process.

    February 26, 2015 at 9:59 am #1354

    Hrothgard looks to Grey and nods. “Thank you…” he says, still confused but even more calm and relaxed. Seeming anxious now. Anxious to learn exactly what just happened to him and what he is feeling. He then nods to Grey.

    “Yes my friend. I agree. Let us head that way.” He says agreeing. He likely would have agreed with anything Grey said to him at that time.

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