December 10, 2015 at 2:21 pm #1638
It does not matter precisely when the following events occur. Assume they happen in the days soon after the defeat of Grimeye. You’ve been spending your days as you wish, and staying at the Shrine of the Golden Lady. There is a section for each of you but I’m chaining these all together here, so feel free to read through the whole thing and then respond when you’ve reached the part that applies to you! Just picture all these scenes happening “Tarrantino” style, not necessarily in order but all related, and you get to watch them all. Have fun!
It is early morning, on a secluded river bank near Shen Ling. A robed Stern kneels before his make shift alter. A crimson glowing pile of coals with his magnificent axe Sunder stuck handle down in the middle forming the holy symbol of Krom. He kneels, freshly shaven head bowed, massive hands clasped before him, his ivory robes pulled taut over his colossal shoulders.
He hears the light crunch of someone walking up the bank towards him but doesn’t look up, he knows the sound of that tread, the cadence of the gliding walk, the slight rasp of mithril steel gauntlets on a worn leather great coat, the swish of a foreign pistol loose in its leather holster.
The nimble steps proceed right up to Stern’s right side, then the crunch as Stern’s friend kneels down beside him. Without looking up Stern smiles speaking lightly to his comrade
“Come to pray with me Brother?”
This is met with the same old brief chuckle as their normal banter plays itself out again for the umteenth time.
“You know I don’t pray Brother, let alone to Krom. I have no tongue for it.”
Grey says smiling over at Stern who answers as always
“So you say. Though, I believe differently, for every enemy slain, every foul creature crushed before you is a prayer to Krom, Lord of Battles.”
Finishes Stern, smiling bringing his head up to regard his friend. Looking over at the pale patrician features of Grey, the smoke from the burning coals drifting between them and the dull burble of the river beyond, intuitive Stern lays a massive hand on his friend’s slight shoulders and asks
“What troubles you?”
“I am alright my friend” Grey assures Stern reaching up to pat the mighty hand on his shoulder with his decidedly smaller one. “I am merely in a contemplative mood this morning and have a question for you.”
Stern raises one arched eyebrow and sits back on his haunches regarding Grey.
Grey continues looking out over the river
“What do you want now Brother? What do you desire from life ahead? Where do you want to go? What would you choose for your future?”December 10, 2015 at 3:27 pm #1645
“Brother, there is still much evil in this land, there may still be more places like Shenling that may require the services of our somewhat specialized trade. Yet we still have duties at home, you your manor and the politics that play there and I the orphanage that I have to attend to. I think we have a trek ahead back home, There are people to assure that order has been restored here in the south. Maybe take some time at home and see what Krom has in store for us. One thing is for certain, Krom favors us and our path.”
December 10, 2015 at 3:41 pm #1649
- This reply was modified 5 years, 4 months ago by Stern.
Grey pats Sterns huge shoulder, a sign of acceptance and solidarity, before standing slowly. Skipping a rock across the river.
“Four skips,” He says with a smile, nodding to Stern.
“Return to your prayers Brother, I will see you later.”
Grey walks off into the morning mists shrouding the river bank.
December 10, 2015 at 3:57 pm #1653
Another moment in time…
It is late one night, Hrothgar whirls round and round, eyes closed, stripped to the waist, sweat flying from him with every move. The wooden floor of his large borrowed room creaks only slightly as the big man spins around again, with the balance of a dancer, his twin swords leaving a silvery trail in the hearth lit room, as he practices again and again. Moving through the dance of a master swordsman.
Corded muscles bunching and flowing smoothly as he transitions from a double forward cross, his mammoth blades flying perpendicular to each other out before him and into low double swipe to his left the razor sharp swords now parallel each other barely a hands breadth apart. Around he goes again muscles straining, gritting his teeth, as he pulls against the movement of the spin to bring himself back upright and the large blades screaming up over and down towards the ground with all his considerable might. At the last moment before they would cleave into the floor, he pulls them apart one to each side and begins another step in his dance.
Repetition, muscle memory and extreme focus claim the mighty warrior as he ends his practice routine and immediately steps into the same routine again, over and over he fights through imaginary foes, weaving his way through complex routines, lost in the dance.
His muscles burning now with the strain, Hrothgar growls along with his work out pushing past the pain as he shifts again from a double forward cross, yards of fast flying deadly steel once more positioned perpendicular to each other out before him. He moves into the low double swipe to his left the razor sharp swords now parallel each other barely a hands breadth apart.
“Thunk!” The sound of mighty blades cleaving into wood, Hrothgar’s eyes fly open, his swords jarred in his hands by the sudden and unexpected obstacle before him. An oversized steel banded wooden tankard, its golden contents leaking swiftly from the dual rents in its side, filling the room with the mouthwatering scent of fresh ale. Holding the large stein in one hand with a bemused expression upon his aquiline face is a disheveled looking Grey.
Swiftly retracting his blades Hrothgar, blinks sweat from his eyes and examines the unusual state of his colleague. As Grey is without his trademark jacket, hat and even his gauntlets are gone. His clothes usually in such good order are disheveled, his hair normally pulled back and well-groomed falls forward over his eyes and sticks up in different directions.
Raising one arched eyebrow, Grey glances as the oversized tankard in his hand left hand slowly dribbling its aromatic contents to the hard wood floor. In his other hand a normal sized stein sloshes slightly as Grey shrugs his narrow shoulders
‘Guess it’s good that there is more where that came from.” He says with a grin motioning with the damaged tankard towards the two large kegs that had appeared before the hearth of Hrothgar’s room. A silvery light glows along the damaged tankard and when it fades the rents are gone leaving the cup whole as Grey passes it to his large friend before sauntering over to one of the chairs before the hearth and half falling half slouching into it.
“Come, come Warrior, let us drink!! And tell tales great and good! Let us relive the glories of our adventures together!!!” Grey cries out exuberantly to the now roaring fire.
Leaning his swords against the wall within easy reach Hrothgar whips his head back scattering sweat everywhere and laughs aloud at his eccentric friend and his seemingly endless surprises. Hrothgar fills his tankard and the two of them crash their cups together and roar out as they begin their personal beerfest…….
Much later, the fire has grown low in the stone hearth, most of the ale is gone, Grey and Hrothgar are slumped in their seats, tankards dangling from near slack fingers. It is that point where they have not spoken in a while but are still awake contemplative….or drunk. The room is silent save the occasional crackle of the dying fire.
Grey’s head rolls nonchalantly over on his right shoulder to peer out between his disheveled midnight bangs at Hrothgar, Grey’s cold steel eyes clear and sober. For Grey the time is right, feigning a drunken slur he calls out softly to get Hrothgar’s attention. Hrothgar after a moment lets his head lol over onto his own left shoulder to drunkenly observe his strange elven companion.
Grey whispers across “What do you want Warrior? What is it you strive for in this world of ours? What do you desire out of your life now?”
December 10, 2015 at 7:17 pm #1665
Hrothgard continues merely staring blankly… drunkenly for a moment. His head falling as if struggling to stay awake. He stares… and stares… for a few long, quiet, even awkward moments.
“BAHAHAHAHA!” The large warrior finally lets out a huge belly laugh.
“You, my friend… are… without any doubt… the strangest and most entirely interesting man I’ve ever known!” He laughs more. “Usually you speak not much more to me then ‘leave me be’ or ‘leave the speaking to those more enriched with in the art.‘” he laughs doing his best Grey impression… albeit not a very good one. “Yet now, here we sit… together… late… drunk!” he laughs “and these heartfelt questions of life’s journeys arise.” he says with another laugh. Grey’s face never changing. Merely allowing the warrior his moment to put his thoughts to words.
Hrothgard stares off at the fire again. His laughter subsiding. The smile fading from his face. A look of true honest thought crossing his brows. Another long moment of silence. This time not nearly as awkward.
“There is not much that I want for, brother.” Hrothgard begins in a low, calm voice. Sounding perfectly sober now. “People strive for love. I’ve all the love I need with my family. My companions.” he pauses. “As for… more… physical love… I see no shortage of that either.” he says with a shrug. “People strive for riches. I’ve no need for anything beyond comfort. Gold does not interest me much beyond its necessity.” he says still looking straight forward to the fire, pausing and shrugging.
“To leave this world a better place when I someday exit from it, than I found it upon my entrance…” He nods slowly. “That. That my brother… is what I wish for. To be known as one who helped the lands. As one who lived boldly so that others may live freely. To be known as one who stood for what was good and right… To be… known.” He looks to Grey now. “That is all. To have my stories be told… and in good light. To have young boys say they wish to someday be like the Warrior, Hrothgard Skaldurr… and to have those words fall on welcomed ears of their parents. This is all I can ask to achieve from my time here, my brother…” he concludes, staring to Grey, nodding his head slightly.December 10, 2015 at 8:02 pm #1666
Grey nods his head along with Hrothgards speach.
Hroth’s passionate words stirring something within even after Hroth’s sobriety fades.. leaving
Grey staring into the dying fire. Raising his cup in salute.
Time stretches by, the fire dull embers, Hrothgar sleeping contentedly in his chair.
Grey stands up slowly and with a nod towards his slumbering comrade…. vanishes.December 11, 2015 at 8:40 am #1669
“I know your there Grey.” claims Grognak nonchalantly still reading from the tome open before him in the great library of Shin Ling.
“Of course you do.” Murmurs Grey as he moves from the shadows of one of the library stacks just behind Grognak. Dressed in his usual great coat and his wide brimmed hat held lightly in one gauntleted hand.
“I could have incinerated you, turned you to nothing more than ash in an instant had I so desired.” Grognak quips agitatedly, at his slowly moving Moon elven comrade, as Grey comes to stand before the desk Grognak has claimed for his studies this afternoon.
“No, you would not have.” Grey states matter-of-factly, wearily even, settling into the rickety chair before the desk, slowly rolling the brim of his hat through his fingers.
Affronted as usual, Grognak sits back, squaring his shoulders and starts into his trademark blustering “Ye…”
Grey looks up into Grognak’s eyes stopping the blustering Evoker cold. Grey’s Steely eyes meeting Grognak’s mismatched eyes. (Right blue left grey)
Grognak glimpses something in Grey’s normally unreadable eyes and expression. Something the argumentative wizard has never seen before, a true depth of emotion and turmoil previously unknown to the wise wizard.
“Stop.” Grey states flatly, “Just stop it man. I did not come here to fight. I am tired of the incessant needling and posturing.” Grey looks away, out into the dusty library. “I came to ask a question. It is an important question. One that only you in all your mighty intellect can answer. Only you have the faculties and the wisdom to discover the answer.”
Intrigued, and a bit off put by Grey’s strange behavior, Grognak leans forwards steepling his dexterous fingers before his face and says semi-haughtily “Yes?”
Grey turns and looks the wizard straight in the eyes and asks “What do you want Wizard? What is your goal in this life? Power? Fortune? What is it you desire from your future? Where do you go from here?” Grey leans back straight faced as his words sink into the proud Wizard.
March 24, 2016 at 2:28 pm #1729
- This reply was modified 5 years, 4 months ago by DM.
“A more important list of questions would be why you are asking, who are you, and what did you do with Grey..but even I get tired of bickering, so I will play along.
I want to travel this world,and others. I like this home base of yours I wish to have one of my own that I can return to after my long travels. I wish to have my own library in which to study the arcane tomes, and ancient text that I discover.
I want to be a real Wizard! Maybe some day I could be the goal of a great adventure HAHAHAH, imagine that, a quest to find me! That I might right a wrong, or examine the evidence of existence of some foul creature that only my magic can slay…and you know…I would help.
And if need be, though likely NOT! Grognak winks, I would call upon great hero’s I have met along the way and see if they fancy an outing…for old times sake.March 25, 2016 at 11:29 pm #1743
Grey stands slowly, steely eyes locked on Grognaks.
Thank you for your candor Wizard and your time.
Grey gives a short bow to the seated man before turning abruptly about face, settling his hat just right on his head and stalks from the library.
Stopping for only a moment about half way to the great doors.
Bringing his left hand out to his side and snapping his fingers.
At which point Grognak feels the rush of displaced air upon his left cheek as Black Stone zooms out from behind Grognak’s head and across the distance to Grey in an ebony blur.
To alight gently on Grey’s forearm.
Then Grey continues out from the great library, it’s huge double doors opening before him, the bright afternoon sunlight dazzling engulfing him in its radiance,erasing his slim silhouette from the squinting Grognak’s view, before the heavy doors swing shut, leaving the Wizard to ponder in the quiet shadowed library.
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