Vaki, efrexoa, Sparax, and reygar go to Maraankosh.
A short Novel, based upon a true story, by Efrexoa the Druid.
27th of Shiel.
We gathered at the shady adventurers hole in the wall.
I had given notice that I was looking for people to come find Nistor.
The first companion was a Goliath woman, known as Vaki, covered in scars, 7'9" tall, with white eyes and red pupils.
The next was Sparax, a Cleric not resembling a Cleric at all, more rogueish in dress, short blond hair, pale skin, and a piece missing from his nose, this adventurer was easy to spot from the other side of the tavern when he walked towards me.
Lastly Reygar, the 8 foot tall naked, scarred, silver-haired and bearded, Vrykul comes shambling inn from the cold.
We all assessed each-other and deemed this as an ok group. We then talked for a short while, until a winged creature entered the tavern and looked around, he walked over and handed me a note. He then stalked off straight for the door.
Reygar claimed it's only a messenger when we pressed him for what race it was. So Vaki called out to it. She then presented herself to it and asks what kind of creature it is.
Luckily he seemed more amused then angry. Reygar tried to tell Vaki off for being rude to it as it left in a hurry.
She then asked me what the envelope contains. I opened it :
"dear adventurers, you are summoned to come to the cloud academy of the clouds, at the main entrance you will be received by me, Marnissa of the wind, if you tarry for more than a week this invite will be void. we have a quest that you might be interested in.
signed Marnissa of the wind, head librarian, and second wizard of Nistor."
I showed Vaki the note and she read it out loud.
We headed out to the skull that took us to the efrem hefet, the evergreens. It was as warm as always. So we walked straight to the temple of the Marble Dragon to get to the second skull.
Upon crossing the bridge Vaki was amazed by the now all to common sight to the rest of us, the actual dragon. The dragon spoke to Reygar in Titonic or some such language. I do not know what they spoke off, but he waved to the dragon. It then spoke to Vaki after staring at her for a long while, it then named itself as the Guardian to her. We of-course already knew this fact. A new fact we gleaned is that the dragon is only 5550 years old. It told us not to waste time and go find a guest? we rushed ahead.
Upon entering the skull room we found Brynor, he was happy we had gotten the message. Brynor stood up, and Vaki was impressed at the size of the Storm Giant Librarian in front of us. Jackamo mentioned him in his last report from here. He still had 2 monocles, instead of the Bifocal invention we told him about last time.
He tells us he has been instructed to take us to Nistor by his teacher. I asked him who it is, and he responds with Nicias. he explains that all lore-masters need to apprentice with Nicias as he is the wisest and most learned in both magic and lore.
Brynor produced a red key from one of his pockets. Reygar told him not to lose it, and Brynor told him that's why it was not given to him, they bantered back and forth for a while until he pressed the key into the pillar. Just like my key it has its own slot. Red smoke billowed up from the platform and a ruby-like giant-sized skull appeared. We got in.
Vaki and I asked Brynor about Nistor, he responded: "Nistor is seen as the archive by the entire word, before it was corrupted by myst. titans walked among the people in times of old. Nicius created Nistor, the citadel in the clouds. its not so impressive from the outside, but the inside will show us why it is called the biggest library in the world."
Vaki was very excited by the prospect of being high up in the sky.
We walked 20 miles from the skull and south-east. 15 miles in we stumbled across a temple building, Vaki and Reygar wanted to explore it, so we agreed to it and headed inside.
Vaki seemed like the excitable sort. getting so excited over all these trivial things.
We saw all the giants, from small hill to large storm ones, we also saw a larger one than the rest with a woman and an axe. he held the axe to her throat. This mural on the wall was quite intricate and high in detail.
Walking further into the cave we found a temple like entrance as Sparax howled out in pain, and came running up to us, claiming to have been attacked by a insect 6 feet tall, with yellow chitin and pincers as large as Vakis maul. Suddenly we heard voices in our heads, telling us evil things not prudent to put down on parchment.
We went inside the temple and found some Zombie-like merefolk, known as seaspawn, I tried to talk to one and he asked what we were doing in the temple of Meri Adrie. We told him we were adventurers from a foreign land here to look around. The other one tells us to follow him.
We entered a room with other creatures, they seemed hostile. One even had tentacles growing out of his head.
One of them was clearly a priest of sorts. he looked to Reygar and Vaki, the tallest in the group. he adressed them in an unknown language, then switched to Glarnic and asked why we were there, to maybe give offerings to the temple. Vaki responded that we were just curious, to which he responded that we all have been young once in our life, suddenly tentacles sprouted from the waters and he said that "someone" likes us.
Sparax claimed that the thing is an octopus that wants to eat Vaki. The priest seemingly unfazed by this comment in Kothic said its rare for the spawn of the Kraken to show interest in newcomers. Vaki tried to leave, which made the priest suspicious, and he said we needed to leave an offering if we wished to leave. Vaki threw some meat to one of the tentacles, and it grabed it mid flight.
The priest told us to not return unless we have offerings. The next time we won't be so lucky. Reygar went insane and talked about attacking them, I'm just glad they didn't understand Kothic. We left, and at the entrance of the cave/temple I saw a creature. It's Brynor, we told him we found nothing and that we are leaving, he seemed happy to do that.
We travled to the outpost, we found more bird-folk there. or Arakoa as they like being called. They are the followers of Nicias, "handy to have people that fly in a floating city" Brynor said. Apparently they are slow to trust, but loyal to a fault when trust is established. They are also quite adept at spell casting.
The outpost was made of stone, neat, well kept. Many races like dwarfs and merefolk live there other then the Arakoa, we saw fire, stone and ice dwarfs, but no Metasheen.
Where were several shops and inns in the small town. A gray rectangular pyramid like building stood out to us, Brynor said it's actually Nistor. Vaki wanted to head there straight away. Brynor showed us to the door on the side, and we entered. Inside we found ourselves in a circular room.
I handed the note to the Giant lady behind the counter. She said there had been a murder and we needed to help them. She handed us some lanterns and said fire is prohibited inside. She is Marnissa, and she took us to some portals. there were 7 of them, for every subject they had a seperate library;
History, philosophy, Medicae, Arcanum, Culture, Construction & artificery, Numbers.
Left to right, top to bottom.
Seemed like the one library was in fact 7 libraries, connected by 1 common hub, known as Nistor. All created by Nicias.
Marnissa opened one of the portals, to the History section and beckoned us to enter without her, and to try solve the murder. As we entered we got a weird feeling and suddenly got transported into the sky, high above the clouds, into a hallway of sorts.
There to greet us was Mira, an Arakoa of mostly human features, and quite good looks.
Exiting the hallway we went from stone to wood, and bookcases in the millions, as far above us as we could see. Mira took us to a statue in the middle, where the scene of the crime in fact was.
The statue is of Lanaxis, and the corpse had clearly fallen off of it, it was a Vrykul, a runemaster Reygar supplied, a keeper of the halls, culture and tradition, like a Shaman. He seemed to have been impaled by a spear. He wore black clothes and boots, Reygar claimed this is traditional Runemaster clothing.
Vaki noticed blood on a pillar to the northwest of the statue. I checked the corpse for into, he had been dead for about 26 hours, from the angle of impaling the killer was shorter than the Vrykul that is 6'8". Considering the weight of the Vrykul it is amazing that the spear has held.
The attacker did it from the back. We turned the corpse, I saw that the victim had seen his attacker and tried to run from him. His hands had defensive marks, like cuts and splinters from the spear and shaft.
No-one had touched the corpse before I did, the Arakoa that discovered the corpse having kept watch over it.
On the corpse we found a note with a familiar incantation :
"Renar cresus Restor Mortis lanin ec dapalin"
The Magebane spell contained in Jackamo's notes. Additionally we found this piece of trivia:
"Blue is for storm, Red is for fire, silver is for cloud, brown is for hill, white is frost, gray is stone, black is femorian, yellow stands for ettin, and green is nature."
I believe this might be the colour of the resulting gems from the ritual on the specific giant races, but the Ritual circle is needed.
Sparax walked off and then yelled that he had found dirt, and with floors as shiny as these, that was very odd. Vaki headed off to help him. Reygar left for the lobby at this point.
Sparax found 2 books in a room to the west, but it was in a language he couldn't read, one was in elven, the other in Glarnic; about runes on platforms, their uses and strengths.
Mira had gotten the ledger book, and said the victim was known as Varian, he was an apprentice Rune master to the frost titan.
Me and Vaki went to check his room again, finding Sparax knocking on the wall with his pommel.
I found an illusion covering a small hallway into a larger one. We headed into it. It was quite dusty.
We found a skinny dwarf in green robes, with orange/blind/gray hair and beard, he holds a staff, he called himself Maron.
He claimed we were in the Scrolls section of the library, dating back about 2000 years.
he says he has seen 3 people pass by, a guard with blue eyes, a dwarf of the metasheen clan in red robes, and a merefolk, but it was dark so he could be wrong about that.
We looked around with eyes and magic for a long while, until Mira came along and found us, she was dumbfounded as to how we were in the Medicae, so we told her about the portal, After searching for a while with Mira, detecting magic, we found a book that looked odd, as I pulled it a portal appeared. We then ended up in the Arcanum part of the library, and we were told by Mira that we were not even allowed in here usually, but this was a special circumstance as we were hunting a killer.
We split up and looked around, as there was no magical trace to follow, we did it the old fashioned way. I saw some magical runes in the floors around the area, they looked like a repository for the magics of that type, but I found no way in. Suddenly a scream was heard, so I rushed towards it. I met Sparax on the way and we came to a shrine like area. upon the alter we saw the mangled corpse of Mira. Vaki then entered the area and kept watch over the door while Sparax and I swept the stacks and isles of the room. I then felt a sharp pain as something lizardlike stepped out of the shadows, with the help of Sparax and Vaki we made short work of the wouldbe assassin and we got the help of Nicias to carry him to the lobby, there Marnissa and Nicias spoke and he informed her that we had apprehended him, she then teleported away with him.
Nicias then thanked us for now, and handed us a warhammer and a shield, that Sparax and Vaki took. we then took the long walk back to the skull, then headed back to Sarek.