We are not even halfway to our destination and my spells are almost completely gone. We are all tired and hurt, and we have no idea what is waiting for us around the next corner. I guess we were always lucky while we were in the botankine before. Now it truely seems it is a place of nightmares.
I also find myself feeling a great depression. My people are controlled by the masters,and I left them without a fight. I am not sure there was anything we can do, but…still. My people and I just left. I hope this is all worth it. I might not have a home to return to once this is over.
We are almost to the lands of my people. At least according to our strange fairy guide we are. We have heard rumors from the trolls that the masters have somehow turned my people to their cause. I would never take the trolls word for anything other than a lie, but I am still worried. I have assured my friends that I would be able to fight my own people if it turned out these rumors were true, but I do have my doubts.
I hope we can turn them to our cause. If not then I dread what may happen.
In all of our recent fight, I have seen one thing that constantly turns the tide of battle against us. It is our luck, our cursedly bad luck. I shoot my arrows, and they miss, but our enemies blows always seem to strike true. I have been spending the last few weeks here going learned a new spell that will hopefully alter our fortunes for the better. It will require some small sacrifice on my part every time it is used, but I feel it will be useful in the long run.
We have wondered far through this lab. Our magic is gone. and we have not yet faced the master of these experiements. I fear we may be overcome, and yet we cannot rest. As much as I would like the dark creatures to attack the trolls one more night, there is no way to make sure of our safety if we rest. We must keep fighting, and hope our marital strength is enough to make it past these tests.
Those creatures! I am surprised we survived. Those animals are from the stories I was told from when I was little. I would never have suspected to have fought a pack of them and to have lived. My friends that i travel with are powerful indeed. Yet I can not rejoice in our vicotry here. The only thing that fills my thoughts is fear. Fear of the trolls we are about to face. What if I am discovered? What if Kain with his loose tounge gives us away?
My Exile 10/18/2010
I suspected it was the trolls that did it, but I had no proof. Hearing the story so many times growing up, and having lived through it myself, I knew the symptoms. It took me a long time to find out, but through my travels in and around the marshlands, and with the help of our villages’ healers, I found a combination of plants and berries that would induce the same horrible effects if poured into a bog at a high enough doses. The hardest to find of these thrived only around the troll capitol city of Dagorlad.
I knew it was no natural disease. It was too targeted and too well thought out. It just had the troll stink all over it. It targeted and killed the lilies in every marsh it spread to. Leading to the unbalancing of that marsh and leading to it being eventually over run by snakes whose poison drove any animal that was bit by them to a state of uncontrollable aggression.
The entire idea of something so awful can only be put at the feet of the trolls. Only they could be so cunningly evil.
Gifted with a great singing voice, I signed on as a Jakobs the bards apprentice. It is very common for bards to join the diplomatic missions that are sent to Dagorlad, and I knew this would be my opportunity to be in the city relatively unnoticed. When that day came, I traveled and visited every apothecary I could find. I was foolish in my questions. I made up the same story everywhere. "The lilies in my marshes are dying. Do you know of anything that can do that? That can just kill the lilies and nothing else?
IT is important that you know these are not regular lilies. These are strong, lilies that can support the weight of many of my people. Hardy and resistant to disease and poison.
Of course all of them denied it. But apparently word got around that I was asking these questions. I slept on the last night of our stay, I was kidnapped. Bag over my head, and all of that trollish thuggery.
After some time, the bag was removed and the ugliest, most foul smelling trolls I have ever seen were in front of me. At that moment, I knew I must live, for to have that be the last face I saw was unacceptable. After being beaten and battered with their trollish fists, they started asking questions. Why was I asking questions about the poison? What did I know? Who told me anything? Who else knew? I am not an accomplished liar, but I am good at surviving. I gave them boring long winded answers. The entire time I was talking I was working at my restraints.
I broke free, was able to, barely, kill both of these ugly creatures. Knowing of their regenerative properties, I decided to make sure they were dead. I cut off all their limbs, and their heads. And cut out their hearts. And set their hearts on fire.
Not being gifted at stealth, I knew speed was my only option. I was beaten, covered in troll blood, and running away from a warehouse with 2 dead and dismembered trolls. I headed straight for the city gates. I ran, and ran, until I was safely in the marshlands. Being a skilled survivalist, I easily hid my tracks and evaded my enemies. I made my way back home to Marish.
It was then that I found out that the same night I disappeared from Dagorlad, the oldest children of the Indavan-Dal royal family were found dead and butchered.
The only way to avoid war was for Marish to pay damages. Heavy damages. My once prosperous home was reduced to a village of filth. We were barely able to keep enough food for us to survive; the rest went to Dagorlad, to pay for my crimes. How long this was to continue I am not sure. I was cast out shortly after my arrival.
I was once known as Jeremiah Peace-Keeper. That name was stripped from me. I became known was Jeremiah Bogrunner. I must run from the Bogs, and never look back.
I left Marish. I left with a smile on my face. Ester and Ezra were avenged, as well as Luke, John, and Timothy. The bastard trolls that did this to my family were dead. Marish would survive, even if it was hard at first.
And I knew the trolls would never hurt Marish again. I learned that lesson at the feet of the greatest ranger our village had ever seen. An old man when I was young, one of the only ones still living from the time of open warfare against the Trolls. I remember the one lesson he taught me. Elder Wiggin told me, “When something hurts you, when something strikes at you, you hit it back harder. You hit it back faster. You hit so hard and so fast they can’t hurt you again. And everything else is too afraid to try.”
It took me a while, but I hit them back. I struck right at the heart of the royal family. And now my family is safe, in poverty, yes, but safe. The trolls don’t dare try to hurt them again.
And I am proven right. All those years of defense have gotten us nothing. The gods did not visit them. Thelestra, the goddess of nature, has visited me. I have kept many people safe through the use of my bow. Tracking down and killing those that hurt others have saved many lives. Peace or defense would have gotten them killed.
I must now show my people that going on the attack against the Masters is the right choice. Through the power of Thelestra, I will show them that the strength of arms, can do as much good as the strength of good will and healing. Maybe even more.
We are traveling to the marshlands of my home. I have never felt such fear. What will I find there? How will I be welcomed. To break my exile… it is forbidden. I was cast out for breaking the tenets of peoples faith. The faith I hold to, but I reject their out dated traditions. I have been proven right. I have met Thelestra, an actual goddess. Their years of following tradition have gained my people nothing. But following my own path, I have reach and accomplished in just a few years, what my people have been doing for generations.
To add to my fear, we must get the trolls to join our coalition. The trolls that hate the gods and hold them in the highest disdain.
My fear is that if they ever find out that we mean to bring the gods back, that the trolls will join the Masters. While a part of me would rejoice if they join the masters, the part of me that I try to fight, but seems to come out in every battle. I would love for the trolls to join the masters and to destroy them before they can help out enemy. But I know our quest is more important than my personal demons.
I will do all I can to get the trolls to join our coalition. I will forget my hatred, for the greater good. Thelestra help me, I will help the trolls.
The poison is still in my veins. This is one of the reasons i left the marshes. I hate poison. Two of my friends lie dead. Though the poison played a small part, stupidity is the reason they are dead. Our fiend kain, almost killed the good doctor by healing him earlier in the fight. The poison in our bodies must have some sort of bad response to magical healing. Almost after the fight was over, the healed the good doctor and himself, causing both of their deaths. We did not have time to shout out to him to stop. We saw it coming, we all cringed, but we were not fast enough to speak. I will find a way to bring the good doctor back at least, as I owe him a debt. I hope the evil skull face voice guy was not waiting for them.
I have just witnessed something great. I have witnessed what my people have been praying for. Untold generations of worship and faithfulness and finally, finally I have seen the fruit of our labors. Past the gates of death, I met and talked to one of the lost gods! I must get word back to my people. But will they listen to anything I have to say? After my exile I am not so sure. But I must persevere! I must get the word out! It is so important.
And as far as the wisdom that was imparted to me, I must keep an eye on Ronan. No harm must befall him. Ever again.
He and I were lucky to have met the “good doctor”. I know I was somewhat hesitant at first to trust him, but after this display of… of.. I don’t know. He rescued us from Limbo. We would never escaped without him. I owe him a debt. But I will not tell him. I will repay it on my own, not be forced to due to his strange ideas of trade.
Travel By Sea
Travel by sea! I have not had much use for boats as of late. I wonder if this “ship” we will be riding on will be anything like the canoes and kyaks we use to traverse my beloved swamp! Horus seems less than enthusiastic about our up coming trip. I must give him free time before we leave, in case there is not much hunting during our trip. I will try to stock up on rations for him before we go. Hopefully being away from land and all the creatures that walk upon it will give us a much deserved rest. Sea creatures wouldn’t want to climb onto a boat to to get a meal would they? I think not. This will be smooth sailing.
My time alone travelling here seems to have helped calm me. My skin in back to its natural state. It had been starting to dry out and crack under the stress. Yet another reason I am looking foreward to this trip. Time to get my skin wet, and relax. I am looking foreward to this last plesant few days before we reach the danger we are sure to find before we make it to the dwarven city.
I have been travelling with this strange mix of people for quite a while. I was drawn to them by their sense of purpose. Their honor. Today I started to question my own. We met someone. Not a friend perhaps, but an ally. He told us about the ancient war of orcs against “The Masters”. He told us it was primarily a matter of balance, and the perceived lack of balance in the orcs.
The history and knowledge that he shared with us fascinated me, and I have already started penning a new song about the orcs struggle against the masters to help give Zek and Ronan a lift in spirits during our next battles, but one particular point has been nagging at me. The talk of balance.
As a ranger, I know about balance. I grew up exploring the bogs and marshes of my homeland. The way the animals and plants interacted with each other. It is a marvelous display of the gods work. I remember the story my parents told me about how all my brothers and sisters died.
The trolls (probably it was them) unleashed a poison into our marshes that killed the lilies. It only killed the lilies. We blocked off those marshes and continued to live our lives. It was not until years later that we realized the repercussions. The lilies died. The fish that lived under the lilies for their shade and protection died. The turtles that fed off fish and snakes died. The snakes moved into those marshes. The snakes bit the large predators that used that area for water and food. Diseased. Those animals became a plague on us all. Maddened and feeling no pain, the attacked anything they saw. Transferring their poison and disease to all of us. I survived. No brothers and sisters did. We lost many to the disease, and even more to cleaning out the marsh of all those predators and snakes. All from the death of the lilies. All from that one marsh losing its balance.
Balance is very important, and I cannot help but feel I have lost my own, somehow. In the marshes, attack first makes since. Protect yourself from venom and poisons. It was prudent.
Now I feel that I am using that previous prudence to hide my fear. I have been the first to unleash pain and death upon many of the animals and creatures we have come across. Animals I was unfamiliar with. How many small parts of nature have I ruined the balance of?
Worse yet, I do not only attract first when it comes to creatures. An act that has been tormenting my mind ever since I did it. I was awaked by “george” screaming in the night. He appeared to be transforming into something. I do not know if it was because he was a troll, or because of my own fear, but I shot him, unprovoked, before I knew if he was a threat or not.
My goal in life, the reason I joined with these honorable people upon their quest, was to perform great deeds. Acts with make this world a better place, a stronger place. A more balanced place. To bring the eyes of the gods back to this world, and for them to be pleased once again with what they see. To make them come back. I feel as if, while the goals of our team have been good, my personal actions, my personal intentions, have only hurt my cause. Have turned the eyes of the gods even more firmly against this world.
I must regain the balance I used to have, if I am going to help balance this world. Help unite the gnomes and the goblins. I have never felt more secure than when I was alone, traveling in the bog and marshes. Maybe I should break off from the group, for a little while. Make my way to the next town on my own, through a less traveled path. I will sleep on it.