It´s been a long time since I have been travelling the lands. It was great to finally meet the sunlight again, and the exiles in townsquare. Even better when a group hunted Dal´Noth. The longest hunt I have been in for a time. When I have stepped out of the library these last Zodiacs, it has been only a short visit. Finally I can hunt when I am in the lands. I am getting impatient these days, as gaining all the lessons required by Rodnus is tiresome. Even more so when I don´t really progress in my profession, killing things. All things have an end though, and also this. I just have to stick to it I guess.
This "first" day in Puddleby consisted of long talks with exiles, hunting on Dalnoth, and a little hunt with the Knight, the latter I haven´t seen in 4 zodiacs. During my time in the lands, I even saw more RQ members, as Bocephus has come back from his long journey, Aeaea was running around doing <censored> things, Wormtongue, our newest member was running around all over the lands healing, I sensed Helaery´s presence and Vagile made her way to town square rather loudly. Did you know she has a healer outfit too? I didn´t, and I must admit I jumped a little when she tried to conk me with her moonstone. She uses the name Vagile Savane when she dresses in white.
Eager to learn what had happened in the lands in my absence, I quickly asked around and got Yor, J´nder and many others to fill me in on the latest. Yor could tell tales of great battles beyond Wisher´s gate, and Bartok´s Pit, the latter where Zorton got a stone. The stones still breaks, and the mystics don´t know why though. The last fullmoonraid was a complete disaster, as the Orga Magician now summons large swarms of death vermine along with the locks and the shamans. The whole OC raid was quickly dispatched of, after the healers had fallen to the deadly vermines.
From the grapevine : Brae got a broken pendant from Tenebrion, in hopes that he could fix it. The pendant is now in Wormtongue´s hands, while he ponder on the possibility to repair the thing.
From the grapevine : Umbrion is the LEAST agressive and violent of Tenebrion´s brothers. There are 5 brothers in addition to Tenebrion.
Tyking II says, "I now read a message from Lord Tenebrion."
"Exiles of Puddleby: Undoubtedly you have recently noticed strange emanations from Purgatory. No doubt many of you have suspicions that they are my doing. At first, I thought so as well. But after intense research, I have determined that it is not my doing. The strange emanations from purgatory occured long AFTER I had broken a pendant. After discussion with Tyking II, we have developed a theory. There is a new being, if you will, that is manifesting itself in the power of the broken pendants, and attacking the plane known as purgatory"
Dalnoth and Qual
Votenkath now has his Undine thugs roaming around outside taking out 'Noths. GD, GW, Skels, HC, etc... For some exiles , these beings are a thorn in the side, as they keep the castle area clean of Noths. Beasties many exiles want to hunt. A group with Yor and Ziff killed one of these greater deaths. And they used one of Qual´s creatures to do it.
Yor says, "He had us trap a GD....Then we lured it towards some Vels. The Vels kept hitting it with lightning, until they killed it."
I had to see for myself of course. This was intriguing. I found these beasties near the castle. And just south there were skeletons killing dews, and rats even..The whole castle area was cleaner than Zonk´s tower, and for those that have been there, that place is clean! The Noths seemed to be busy elsewhere though, as we didn´t meet so many of the strongest ones on our hunt. The west dewcave is interesting though. Many pallidews spawn there repeatedly, and it can be quite dangerous. Thankfully, Thuja and Stormraven had been hunting there before under these circumstances, and could show us newcomers the proper way to dance the dew inside. We received a stresscall from another Noth group, and let dews be dews and headed for them. Just outside, in the pass - we met a Xarnoth, and a whole load of wendies. As if that wasn´t enough, two helnoths showed up too. I guess they were all done with their meeting... The result was of course a disaster. Thuja and Purehero fled like the wind, and gathered a rescue party for the rescuers. Then, after some time, we could rescue those who needed rescue in the first place. A very typical day in the lands indeed, and a great welcome for me.
Another, not quite planned long stay in the library. I fear there will be many of these in the future. That was a great loss this time, as I had been looking forward to PMC´s regular practice at Wisher´s Gate. PMC is the abbreviation for Puddleby Marine Corps, a group dedicated to advance in tactics and explore areas where this is necessary. Our current base of operation is Wisher´s Gate, Hatred´s Hollow and the Orga Outback. ( Wisher´s Gate is those purple bushes in Bones, Hatred´s Hollows the sne´ll just after, and Orga Outback all the sne´lls that leads to Orga Village) This presents a great challenge, and I am getting addicted to lightning bolts...The last raid was a huge success, measured in new entries on the map Lorikeet is making, and in no departs. The clan PM has been hunting there for eons now, mapping out more than we know. The names we use for these places are theirs. They fit perfectly, although hatred´s hollow could have been renamed something with "hell" in it. PMC has decided to make our map public, there is no reason at this point to let yet another group invent the wheel once again. Better then to gather around one map and make the changes there as we find out new things. Of course, being a member of RQ - I can´t support non-sharing of this kind of information.
The ever-exploring Yor also organizes raids trough Wisher´s Gate. He has also made a plan to take over Hatred´s Hollow. You may remember his successfull tactic on Alchemist´s Folly. This one has charts and movements and groups. Very impressive work. I was part of a team some zodiacs ago, that made a great effort in Hatred´s Hollow. We did well a very long time, but something happened in the last stages, at the point where we were about to go trough the PF path in the North east corner. I don´t think I have ever, never been more nervous ...
Eek says, "We are SCREWED ;D
I think the red one there is a frenzy, there are new spawns of locks firing at us from a safe distance, and no PF currently standing could get us trough the path. I was very, very quiet - I was biting my nails, tearing my hair, you get the picture. And we were all in the one-syllable word phase. You know, words like "Go!, No!, Out!, Gah!Pull!" etc.. Elenis got raised in a hurry and jumped trough the bushes, and we all followed quickly after. Most on a chain dragged by Thuja.. I got to see my trainer, but I hope next time I will be able to meet him in a better state, with more pride. That is, not fallen and dragged trough the mud. We made it as far as Orga Village, got jumped by some dreadlocks west of it, but managed, and was contemplating the various paths that leads out on a sne´ll not far from OV. In the name of exploration, and with Puddleby on our lips, we charged different paths - just to see where we would end up. A small group ended up in a sne´ll with a greeting hatred, which scattered the group like leaves in the wind. Thuja got many on her chain, then fell, then Baff and Baffette made a daring rescue, as they dodged locks, hatreds and frenzies all the while healing themselves and chaining corpses. Wonder over all wonders, we ended up in Aki in Snaggy!
On a recent hunt to Noth, I discovered that the Noths no longer have any bounty. Instead, they seem to be full of.. hmm .. juice. That the dew could be full of it, I can understand, but Noths? Anyway, Votenkath has promised exiles that he will learn us how to take care of this.. juice, but we haven´t found any trainer yet. Some Noths still seems to have been in the bank recently, as they carry copper-chests still.
Callia has made a detailed study on Tenebrion. I don´t share her conclusion, but it´s an interesting read still.
She concludes : He will wring every advantage he can from us, and then discard us like yesterday's fishwrap. His style is destructive, and vindictive. He destroys casually, ignoring the consequences, and ignoring his own responsibility therein.
Personally, I think many exiles are behaving as superstitious villagers - afraid of the unknown, too eager to condemn all that they do not yet know. The fear seems to be, among other things, that we will have Dark Knights using purgatory as a transit. I find that pretty silly, as they full well can get to our island by normal means. I find that Tenebrion is a seeker, as many in my clan. A scientist in front of a puzzling problem that he wants to solve. That doesn´t mean we in Puddleby can trust him, but neither does it mean that he is the cause of all our problems. I follow Master Hekus´advice in this:
Master Hekus says, "My advice to you then is to tread warily; not to proffer trust lightly, but not to withhold it arbitrarily. Observing always the golden rule."
Long before Tenebrion even got hold of a pendant, Minx told us that the magic of Purgatory was in danger. That exiles were falling closer to death, and that the magic of Purgatory seemed to decrease. Wisher and the PMs first met him in the year 534 whe he first spoke of this. I first met him much later, once when poor Viper was so fallen he didn´t even have a normal corpse. And not so long ago, Althea met him down in the southforest where he spoke of the same thing. Long before I heard about Tenebrion, I heard about pendants behaving strange. The argument then is, but if this is a problem, Tenebrion sure isn´t helping any. Well, I think he might. He may actually be our only hope in figuring out what is happening.
I also find it quite humorous, that in the case of Votenkath, we trust him because he isn´t Qual. We know less about him than we do about Tenebrion, and yet , or maybe even because of that, we trust him. Any but me find that odd, to say the least?
Kira was in a bit of trouble some Zodicas ago, as she was approached by a man named Lakopa. This fellow didn´t only threatened her, he had a list he said with exile´s names on it. Kira got abducted, and many exiles were on Lakopa´s trail to find her. They were successfull, and Kira was found near the lake. Lakopa was killed, and on his body Wormtongue found this list. Among the exiles Lakopa was looking for was Kaitlyn and White Wolf to name a few.
It´s been a long time since I have made it to one of the Full Moon Orga Camp Raids . Day 27 of Autumn, 540 I finally got a chance. We made it trough OC1-3 pretty quick, and tried to get inside OC4. This sketch is taken after such an attempt. We had to pull back to OC3 in a hurry, and were of course met by a wall of lightning bolts there too. Zippy wriggled his way up to J´nder, making a rod - while the rest us were pushing exiles around - trying to get the healers towards them so they could be raised. After Thuja got up we made some orga stew of those warlocks, and we were in control yet again. I OC4 we got groups stationed not only in the pit, but also controlling the backspawns. And then we just decided to wait it out. Killing locks near the pit summons multiple death vermines, healer killers. We wanted the Orga Magician to think it was safe for him to appear, since he waves an illusion around himself if he thinks it´s dangerous. It looked good for a long time. And then, I don´t know what happened, I was not near the pit, but the Magician was not solid when he first appeared, and the number of locks he summoned got us down pretty fast so we had to retreat back to OC3, again. Licking our wounds, getting more exiles to join from town, we tried and managed to get close to the pit and the magician once again. At that time, there were around 20 locks surrounding him. With a rod in front, we charged him, but the locks made it difficult to get to him. We had to kill one lock to open a path to him. With all those locks, flames and whatnot in my vision, I could hardly move - and the magician went in and out of my view. I tried to pull a fallen exile to get to the magician, but I couldn´t see a hand in front of me. I have no idea if I hit him before I fell, I don´t even know if I came close enough. After having time to think in the library, I don´t think we approached it in the right way. Although killing locks gives us problems with death vermine, we should be able to make small teams out of healer/fighter and be able to dispose of them before they hurt the healers too much. Sadly enough, I don´t think I will be of any use in the conditions we met this time. Where my vision got blurred and it was all a draw of the cards if I went in the right direction or not. The Magician was hurt by the way, he was on yellow. From whose axe I have no idea. I departed right away, and went to libary to find motivation for yet another raid when I´m able.
Day 15 of Autumn, 540 Votenkath made an appearance. He was heard from his castle on Noth.
Votenkath thinks, "Qual grows stronger by the hour...I am giving serious consideration to having bounties once again on noths and the like. With the exiles I gained ground. Without them I am trapped in a corner. Yet the killing of my loyal Greater Deaths was a major attack on my forces."
Ziff Rengar thinks, "your greater death killing gurgi is worse"
Votenkath thinks, "my greather death would never attacked Gurgi or any other exile except in self-defense. I shall ponder this further. The Separ must be found. Beware the illusions. Qual. the exiles ... in some cases I fear they are one and the same. As I understand it he seeks to control all he encounters and he often does. I shall ponder this until the night of the next Chaos Storm after that you shall have my answer about bounties.The trainer has been withheld. I have choosed to have my undine collect the juice. I may give back bounties... I am pondering the matter until the next storm."
Charlos and Solas were wed at the farm near the lake, and many an exile had found their way there. Solas in her shiny white dress, and Charlos had found his best suit. I adore weddings, and I have attended quite a few over the years I have lived here. Achates was my date for the wedding, and he was a perfect gentleman.
After the bride and groom had left us, I made a bonfire with my newly baught tinderbox, a great invention. Slyph got a bit more than she could handle I´m afraid, so did the spriggin Malkor - who nearly roasted himself.
Many a WG raid later, we have mapped all borders, all PF paths - and we just know that there is something we have missed. It may be a simple thing, it may be more complex. Anyway, we have made a list over probable things to check, and will go trough them - hopefully in a methodical manner. The ability of the PMC, and the groups I have been in when Yor et all leads, continues to amaze me. It´s just wonderful to see what a group that pulls together can be able of. On the last PMC practice we went trough Hatred´s Hollow like it was a stroll in the park. Or, well, almost a stroll in the park. We didn´t meet so many hatreds on our way to orga village this time, but instead there were frenzy party in the outback it seemed. After numerous raids in the outback, the rest of the land doesn´t meet my requirements for challenge anymore. On Dalnoth, Votenkath seems to have the upper hand - and there is a long time since I have felt an adrenaline rush hunting there. Qual seems to have lost some of his power, he is not sensed so often anymore. Can be because he is in his study plotting more evil schemes, or in his laboratory creating more odd monsters. It may be good for us that Votenkath is winning, I don´t know. I don´t trust Votenkath longer than I can throw Gurgi actually. Maybe it´s time for me to only hunt there when I can get one healer with me, duoing the place. That should be challenging a while. I whisper, yell and talk as much about the abyss as I can to those I regurarly hunt with. I think it´s time we took it again. At least we can start making the plans...
Drenn from the Hearts of Tan, heard a voice calling his name on Tenebrion´s island. Understandingly, he thought the whole thing was rather spooky. I did too. He heard it on several occasions, always at the same snell. When he fell, the voice asked if he was alright. His clanmates that were with him didn´t hear the voice, and before you start thinking Drenn is ready for the Home, maybe the voice wanted to speak to Drenn in particular. I hope he gets help from his clan in figuring this out.