Chapter #43

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*****
*  The 8 player characters contained in these writings are copyright
*  1992 by Thomas Miller.  Any resemblance to persons or characters
*  either real or fictional is purely coincidental.  Copying and/or
*  distribution of these stories is permissible only under the one
*  condition that no part of them will be used or sold for profit.
*  In that case, I hope you enjoy them.
*****

--------------------------------------------------------------------
THE PARTY:

Alindyar, 7th level drow elf mage (N)
Belphanior, 5th/5rd/6th level high elf fighter/mage/thief (CN)
Ged, 6th/6th level grey elf priest/mage of Boccob (NG)
Halbarad, 7th level human ranger (NG)
Mongo Thunderhead, 7th level dwarf fighter (CG)
Peldor, 8th level human thief (N)
Peyote, 6th/7th level half-elf fighter/druid of Obad-Hai (N)  <DEAD>
Rob, 7th level human priest of Trithereon (LG)
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Date:   6/28/570 C.Y. (Common Year)
Time:   early morning
Place:  Havenhill, capital of the Principality of Ulek
--------------------------------------------------------------------


                       XLIII.  Intermission



  The party is in Havenhill, resting and sitting on quite a large
pile of treasure.  Their friend, the Baron Trevor, has persuaded
the king of the Ulek Principality to find a priest who is capable
of raising the (nine days dead) half-elf, Peyote.  They are in
the king's guest room, waiting for such a priest.

Ged:  I hope he finds a priest who follows the ways of Good.
Belphanior:  (wishing this whole process would speed up so the
  treasure could be divided)  Yeah.
Halbarad:  Speaking as one who has been in this situation, I can
  say that Peyote would agree with you, grey elf.  No evil priests
  will do here.
Alindyar:  Ah, here comes the good baron now.
Trevor:  Hello, my friends.  (the king comes in with him, along
  with two priests wearing white robes)  This is his Highness,
  whom I believe you know.
Halbarad:  (bowing)  Your Majesty.
Belphanior:  (imitating the ranger)
King:  These are priests of Trithereon, who I have brought to aid
  you in your time of need.
Rob:  (kneels)  Greetings, O exalted ones.
priests:  Greetings, disciple.
Mongo:  (bored silly)  Ho-hum.
Trevor:  They have agreed to help your deceased friend there, in
  view of your group's services to our nation and to Trevor.
priests:  (examining Peyote's corpse, they begin chanting)
Ged:  (thinking of the day when he will have such power)
Peldor:  (thinking of picking the king's pockets)
Alindyar:  (he only appears to be watching in fascination; actually,
  he is wondering what manner of winged creature originally stole
  the princess, and whether or not it will be back)
Rob:  (awed)  Aren't they wonderful?

Peyote:  (quivers)  grk.  ost.  BrglQVNKPRNSBLAAAA!!  DUDE!  (sits
  straight up)  How gnarly!
priests:  This one is alive and well.
Peyote:  Alive and well!  I live once more!
priests:  Of course.  We have brought you back from the realm of
  death.
Peyote:  Most excellent.
king:  Well, I guess we'll leave you to your own devices now.  (he
  and the others leave)  Good luck.
Peyote:  Thanks, dudes!  (stands up, but falls, still weak from the
  spellcasting)  Ugh.  I sure do reek...
Belphanior:  Okay!  Let's divide the magic up now.
Mongo:  Damn good idea!

Ged:  (rolling the die)  A 20!  Yes!  YES!  Roll, drow.
Alindyar:  (only gets a 7)  Hm.  So be it.
Ged:  Hahahaha!  That book is MINE.
others:  (rolling; the only notable roll is Ged's high one though)
Mongo:  Let's do it.


THE MAGIC ITEM PICKS:

Ged:  spell book, rod, human-sized plate +4
Belphanior:  wand of lightning, longsword, potion of extra-healing
Peldor:  mage's ring, dagger of throwing
Alindyar:  amulet, robes
Halbarad:  bow, bottle, spear +2
Rob:  flute, potion of extra-healing
Peyote:  druidic scroll, ancient scroll
Mongo:  crossbow, potion of fire giant strength

  As could be expected, the adventurers split up again to seek out
training within Havenhill.  The city was becoming quite familiar to
them - almost too familiar.  The monetary treasure was sold and
divided into eight rough shares (most of the group used it for the
necessary training).  For over a month, they pursued their various
means of training...

  Alindyar doffed his measly +1 robes in favor of his new +3 ones.
He learned some new spells from the same mage in Havenhill that he
went to last time, as he trained in the wizardly arts.  He also
researched his amulet, and found that its purpose was to protect
his life force.  Intrigued, the dark elf decided to wear the item
at all times, as one never knew what could happen next.
  Belphanior trained for a few weeks with the fighters' guild.
He also copied a single spell from a scroll to his spellbook.  His
new longsword seemed to have no unusual powers, so he tossed it
in his backpack and forgot about it.
  Ged spent weeks in seclusion as he transcribed the evil mage's
spellbook into his own.  Though he was not yet ready to learn
other new spells, he revelled in the power of those copied over
from the book.  Next he examined his rod, and found that it was
enchanted to absorb spell energies - a useful item indeed!  His
new plate mail was ignored; he opted not to wear it, but rather
to save it for some future henchman.
  Halbarad practiced with his new bow and spear.  When he opened
his bottle, it produced great quantities of thick smoke, so he
closed it rather quickly.  The ranger longed for the excitement
of the open road - this city was too small for his liking.
  Mongo practiced a bit with his new crossbow.  It was speedy but
he grew bored with it quickly and went back to the hammer as his
main distance weapon.  He decided to use the crossbow for really
long-range shots, and tossed it into his pack.
  Peldor spent some time at the thieves' guild, then went to have
his ring examined.  It turned out to be a powerful item, granting
its wearer the power to move objects with his mind.  The ambitious
thief practiced a bit with this ring in preparation for the next
time that such powers would come in handy.
  Peyote spent a few days relaxing from his resurrection before
drooling over his new scroll, which had some decidedly powerful
spells on it.  The other scroll was a map of sorts, which he
decided to show to the party when they regrouped.
  Rob again shut himself in the temple of Trithereon, praying
and communing with his god.  He was told that he should take
a more active interest and role in the party's doings, and he
listened carefully.  He examined his new flute (he had long
been an avid flute player in his spare time - really!) and was
delighted to find that it had the power to produce spell-like
effects when played by one skilled with it.

  Finally the party regrouped in their guest room in the baron's
mansion...

--------------------------------------------------------------------
THE PARTY:

Alindyar, 8th level drow elf mage (N)
Belphanior, 6th/5rd/6th level high elf fighter/mage/thief (CN)
Ged, 6th/6th level grey elf priest/mage of Boccob (NG)
Halbarad, 7th level human ranger (NG)
Mongo Thunderhead, 7th level dwarf fighter (CG)
Peldor, 9th level human thief (N)
Peyote, 6th/7th level half-elf fighter/druid of Obad-Hai (N)
Rob, 8th level human priest of Trithereon (LG)
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Date:   8/4/570 C.Y. (Common Year)
Time:   midday
Place:  Havenhill, capital of the Principality of Ulek
--------------------------------------------------------------------

Mongo:  So, what do we do NOW?





next time:  A new quest.

ANONYMOUS FTP SITE: tybalt.caltech.edu (in pub/adnd/fluff/adventurers)
***********************************************************************
NOTES:  Below are the character backgrounds that I promised.  They
turned out to be longer than I expected, so there are only the
first four in this posting.  The last four will come next.  I will
be on vacation from this Friday (5/22) to Sunday (5/31) so no new
postings will appear in that time.  So, until June, farewell...


           A BRIEF OVERVIEW OF THE ADVENTURERS' PASTS
                          (part 1 of 2)



>-

Alindyar

  As the enlightened few know, the Underdark is the name given to the
vast complex of caverns far beneath the world's surface.  The term
originally referred to the central cluster, hundreds, nay, thousands
of miles long, of such caverns and passages.  Over the centuries, it
has come to represent any deep, dark region below the sunlit world
that most are familiar with.  Anyhow, the Underdark as a rule is at
any given time crawling with many sorts of beings.  There are the
mindless creatures, both large and small, which roam in search of
food.  Then there are the intelligent, yet weak humanoids and other
things, which group together for mutual safety and survival.  The
most respected and avoided creatures in the Underdark tend to rule
their black caverns and cities and manipulate the other denizens of
the area as they see fit.  Of these - the kuo-toa, the duergar, the
illithids, and such - the drow are the most feared, and the most
dominant.
  These ancestral cousins of surface elves were, as many know, driven
from the surface millennia ago, due to conflicting views and actions.
While they are as evil as the blackest demon, they also have created
strange, powerful magics and weapons during their ages under the
world.  Drow wizards and priests are as powerful as they are evil.
The dark elves' sprawling cities are scattered here and there about
the lands below.  Such huge complexes are always found alone, for
there is enough conflict inside the walls of these places for any of
the dark elves to be happy.  A war between two or more such cities
would surely be chaotic beyond belief.  There are a number of clans
(families) within each city, and these vie for control of each other
and the city in general.  Life in an Underdark drow city is violent,
bloody, and often short.
  However, one dark elf in every ten thousand or so either does not
have, or else loses, the desire to follow in the footsteps of his
or her family and race.  Such an individual almost always becomes
an outcast, a fugitive from the others, for it is impossible to
hide such feelings for lengthy amounts of time in a drow society.
  In one such area, the sprawling city of Dril'ithzan'abaar, there
was a drow whose thoughts were as described above.  This fellow,
one Alindyar, of the Rillsifane family lineage, was born well over
a century ago.  From birth, he seemed gifted - for he had an uncanny
mastery of certain types of magical energies.  However, it was soon
obvious that the fledgling mage had no desire either to slay others
or to worship the dread Lolth.  His elders tried to reprimand him
and force him to follow in their path, but although he showed some
signs of understanding, inside his own mind young Alindyar cared
not for what he heard.
  One night, while most others slept the sleep of the damned, the
drow gathered his few possessions and left the city with a caravan
bound for other parts (such caravans went from place to place in
the Underdark, operated by bands of renegades who traded goods and
information between drow cities).  It was a simple matter for him
to tell them that he had a mission to attend to; by the time they
deduced the truth, Alindyar was somewhere within another drow city.
  In this manner, the youth traveled from place to place, changing
caravans as the need arose (or as he was driven away).  He visited
over a dozen dark elf cities in this manner, his stays ranging from
a week to a decade in length.  His most recent sojourn was in the
city called Barr'bazithan by some; in this place he worked at a magic
guild as an apprentice for nine years.  Alindyar found a sponsor
mage who did not care where his student came from, and learned not
only about spellcraft but also about the flora and fauna of the
Underdark.  It was also here that the drow first heard stories of
the world above, a place where one could fly upwards forever without
hitting a rock ceiling.  He immediately yearned to see this new and
fantastic place, and read everything he could find and talked with
those who had been there.
  Eventually, after his first nine-year apprenticeship was over, the
aspiring mage was told by his mentor that he would have to compete
in a series of trials with the other students - trials that resulted
in death for the losers.  No coward, Alindyar nevertheless guessed
that his particular specialty area of magic was weaker for this sort
of contest than others' were.  It also occurred to him that his own
views did not necessarily agree with those of his mentor, and it was
even possible that the fellow wanted to find out which of his many
students were the most ruthless.
  In any case, Alindyar again gathered his items, and with a number
of ideas of what the surface world would look like, he left the city
and followed the most likely path to the surface.  After ascending
for two days, the drow emerged into a moonlit night.  He gazed at
the stars for many moments before realizing that he had made the
right decision.  Looking around, he noted that he was in a forest;
trees (which he had never seen before) surrounded him at every turn.
  Alindyar wanted to put as much space as possible between himself
and his point of entry on the surface.  He fled deeper into the
forest, and journeyed by night, resting during the daylight hours
whenever possible.  The light of the sun weakened him, such that
he found it necessary to wear a thick robe, which made him very
hot and uncomfortable.  After a few days he felt that he could at
least survive in the sunlight, however.
  One night soon after his arrival on the surface, Alindyar left
the forests and made his way toward civilization.  He quickly found
that he was in an unsavory region, for there were bandits and evil-
doers everywhere.  Encountering one such band, the drow managed to
persuade them that first, he had nothing of value, and second, his
spellcasting abilities could be a great asset to their activities.
Despite some yelling and name-calling (and three dead bandits),
the bandit chieftain agreed, and thus it was that the dark elf was
brought to the city of Fax, in the Wild Coast.  When his companions
went to a tavern and got drunk that night, Alindyar decided to go
to another inn - the Green Dragon Inn.  It is noteworthy that, even
after a couple of days, he grew tired of his companions' constant
racial insults and slurs.  It was all too obvious that few on this
surface world would easily accept a dark elf.
  The drow was sitting quietly, in disguise, at a table in one dark
corner, when a number of strange individuals began congregating at
his table and one nearby.  Alindyar sat there quietly and watched
and listened, and the rest, as they say, is history...
  (Needless to say, the drow chose the company of the Adventurers
over that of the bandits)
  Alindyar is currently very happy with the party.  He not only has
protection from those who would discriminate against him for no real
reason (and with violence), he also has something more important by
far:  true friends, friends he can trust not to stab him in his
sleep, friends who he can converse and travel with freely and happily.
The drow feels closest to Ged, probably because of the magic that
they both love so dearly.  He also likes Halbarad and Peyote, feeling
that they always do (or at least try to do) the right thing.  The
dark elf trusts and respects Mongo, although the dwarf is a bit too
violent for his tastes.  He doesn't really care for Belphanior's
company, because the elf is much too violent for his tastes.  Rob
is, to Alindyar, simply a useful, well-meaning fool.  Peldor is one
who is likeable, yet must be watched carefully; Alindyar has had
several metaphysical discussions with the thief already, though.
  Alindyar tries, whenever possible, to learn about the ways of the
surface-dwellers - their customs, their lifestyles, their languages.
He is trying to fit in above ground as well as he can.

>-

Belphanior

  The Wild Coast region is well-known for its violent and chaotic
inhabitants.  Over a century ago, one such inhabitant-to-be was
abandoned in a slum within the city of Badwall, one of the major
populated areas of the region.  The youth was unusual in that he
was elven; the elves are not given to discarding their infants in
wild areas.  Whether the two-year-old babe was truly, purposely
left in that ramshackle stone hut, or his parents were slain and
then he was stashed there, remains unknown.  The infant was found
and adopted by the street people of the city, and grew from a babe
into a child in their care.
  As might be expected, children (even elven ones) coming of age
in such a place would have to learn to survive early in life.  The
wayward youth, called Belphanior by those protecting him, was no
exception.  He learned to steal, climb walls, hide in even the most
meager of shadows, and other such useful talents.  Not only did the
young elf learn these things, he _excelled_ at them.  Even more
remarkable was the youth's skill and speed in battle.  Whether he
was using true weapons, improvised ones, or his bare hands, the
elf-child was a formidable opponent.  He learned things much more
quickly than any of his peers on the street, and for that matter,
he was larger and stronger than even the human waifs.  Soon, they
came to respect him, and then to fear him.  The elf was extremely
aggressive, and allowed none to challenge or intimidate him.  One
time, a street bully pulled a knife on him; Belphanior had slain
the offender within the space of ten seconds.  No one ever gave
him any trouble after this incident.
  The elf came to realize that he was destined for greater things.
He went to the thieves' guild to seek instruction, and was accepted
rather quickly as an apprentice.  He was assigned to a particular
man, one Nerkon, a cruel and unforgiving master.  Often the young
elf would complete a task and still be chastised for not doing a
good enough job.  The only reason that Belphanior tolerated this
was the fact that Nerkon had once learned a bit of the ways of
magic.  The vile man was no master, to be sure, but he knew some
of the more basic spells - knowledge that could come in handy at
times.  Belphanior continually pestered the thief to show him
how to wield sorcery, until finally Nerkon agreed and began to
instruct him in the mystical arts.
  Nerkon was careful to only show the elf the most rudimentary of
spells; he never suspected that not only was Belphanior a very
quick learner, but also the elf was pretending less mastery of
magic than he actually had.  As his knowledge of spellcraft grew,
Belphanior's confidence grew as well.  Finally, one night Nerkon
was howling in a mad rage, drunk with liquor as well as mindless
rage.  He grew angry at the elf and made the mistake of swinging
a fist at him.  Belphanior broke a bottle over the thief's head,
rendering him unconscious, and then took a jar of poison, coated
a dagger with it, and nicked Nerkon's arm after placing the
weapon into his other hand.
  The next day, Belphanior explained to the guild the terrible
drunken rage of the deceased thief, how he must have poisoned
himself in his inebriated state, and such things.  The guild was
not particularly angry, for few had truly cared for the cruel
man.  Even better, when they searched Nerkon's room for his old
spellbook, never finding it, they assumed that the suspicious
and crafty ex-thief had hidden it elsewhere, and let the matter
drop.  Belphanior waited cautiously for a full week, then went
to the place where he had hidden the spellbook under a false
stone and recovered it.  Pleading grief, he told the guild that
he wanted to leave the city for a time to see the rest of the
world, and thus did so without incident.  If any of the guild
members truly cared, none ever mentioned it.  As things turned
out, the elf outlived all of the members of the guild anyway,
for he was elven, and what passed as years to humans were mere
moments for him.
  Belphanior came to the city of Fax, and after many patient
years of preparation and planning, he had set up a supply store
which was the front for his fencing activities.  Operating on
an agreement with the thieves' guild of Fax, the elf became
somewhat wealthy over the next few years, and invested his
money wisely, buying several small homes to serve as hideouts
in times of need.  One such place was unknown even to the
guild, for the elf was suspicious of everyone.  He hid his
money in a number of locations, so that he would always have
some in times of need.
  There came a time, however, when Belphanior truly _did_ wish
to get out of the cities and civilized regions, and journey to
new and exciting places.  Thus, he began frequenting taverns
and inns, listening keenly for tales of quests and other job
opportunities.  He finally found what he was (or thought he was)
looking for in the Green Dragon Inn, when a typical-seeming
discussion led to violence and a mission was declared.  Joining
this group, the elf collected his various possessions and money
and departed Fax with this merry band...
  As the months have gone by, Belphanior's enthusiasm for his
adventuring party has waned somewhat.  He still looks forward
to finding new and interesting people (and sometimes robbing or
killing them), but has become slightly more self-serving and
power-oriented in the last year or so.  He likes Peldor, since
they often share common motives, and would actually enjoy a
nighttime excursion with the thief.  He respects Ged and Alindyar
for their magic, and Mongo for his fighting prowess, but does
not necessarily agree with any of their opinions.  The vile-
tempered elf used to dislike the priest, Rob, but has come to
appreciate his hard-headedness and determination to succeed in
the face of greater odds - traits that Belphanior tends toward
as well.  He actively dislikes Halbarad and Peyote, whom he
thinks of as "the goody-two-shoe pair", and would like to be
rid of them, permanently if possible.
  Nevertheless, the chaotic elf is learning that aggressiveness
and violence will not solve every problem every time.  Whether
he grows less chaotic or not, only time will tell.

>-

Ged

  The elves are among the most noble of the races on the world, and
among them, the grey elves (faeries) are most exalted.  These proud,
often haughty members of perhaps the most ancient race known to man
(or elf) typically stay in strange, elegant cities in the heart of
peaceful lands, there to grow incredibly old and learn things much
beyond the ken of mortals.  Often, these elves become legendary
figures to those non-elves who know of them.  One such grey elf
had origins unlike any others of his kinfolk.
  Born over a century ago in the land of Celene was a grey elf named
Ged (this is a shortened form of his true Elven name, which is nine
syllables long).  This individual, from early childhood, proved to
be more intelligent and perceptive than others of his kind - a born
mage, said the elders of the young lad.  While it is true that he
had such aptitude, it is also known that Ged harbored an intense
interest in the elements of nature - the wilderness, other lands,
and faraway places.  He expressed an interest to his parents to go
out into the world, and so when a rare opportunity to visit the
family's cousins far to the east arose, young Ged was allowed to
come along.  He and a number of his kin journeyed via powerful
magic to the distant Isles of Spindrift, hundreds of leagues to
the east, farther even than the Aerdian continent.
  Upon seeing the open water around the islands, the elf was at
once instantly and irrevocably enthralled.  He frolicked and swam
in the water at every opportunity, much to the amazement of his
parents, who considered the possibility that their young son was
possessed by some strange being.  Anyway, as might be expected
of an elven vacation, the trip lasted for several years.  When he
was told that it was time to return to Celene, Ged pleaded and
begged to be allowed to stay in the islands.  His parents knew
that he was a responsible child, as they knew that he was safely
among relatives, so they let him stay in the Spindrifts with his
kinfolk, despite the odd nature of his wish.
  For forty years, Ged remained in the area, learning everything
he could about sailing and the ways of the open sea.  He became
close friends with a colony of aquatic elves, sometimes staying
with them in their underwater homes via the use of magic spells
and enchanted seaweeds.  When he was not in the water, he often
explored the other islands.  As he grew up in an environment that
he truly loved, Ged resumed his studies of spellcraft, finding
that he not only enjoyed sorcery, but he wanted to learn more.
An odd aspect of his interest in magic was his desire to learn
the priestly spells as well - it was not just magecraft that he
liked, but also the more holy magics.
  Researching the various theologies, Ged found exactly what
he was searching for in the religion of Boccob.  This deity not
only combined the best aspects of magi and priests, but was also
a lenient god.  The ideologies and ways of Boccob captivated the
elf, as he practically worshipped magic anyway - and Boccob WAS
magic.  Thus is was that Ged began his pursuit along two very
different, yet in this case related, paths.  For years he was
involved in research along this vein.
  There came a time when he desired to see still more of the
lands of the world, their cultures, their religions, and of
course their magic.  Somewhat reluctantly, Ged bid his cousins
farewell, and boarded a ship sailing for the main continent.
After arriving onto the shore weeks later, the elf wandered
the lands as his whims changed, taking in all aspects of the
cultures around him.  It is noteworthy that he did not care
much for the decadence that he found within most of these
places.  He resolved to do what he could to rid the world of
evil beings in the future, as he recognized that he was not
yet powerful enough to deal with everyone he wanted to.
  Eventually he made his way into the treacherous Wild Coast
region, and happened into the nearest city, Fax.  As he passed
a local bulletin board, Ged noticed one sign requesting help
for a mission.  Intrigued for some unknown reason, he went to
the specified place at dusk - the Green Dragon Inn.  There he
became involved with a certain group of wanderers and lunatics
who sought to complete the quest of a dead man...
  Ged is comfortable with his position within the party right
now.  He seems to have the respect of all of the other party
members, perhaps due to his age and experience.  His constantly
changing whims, desires, and goals allow only three things to
remain constant:  his lust for magic, his desire to further the
cause of Good (via Boccob), and his love of the seas and oceans.
Having been raised exclusively among elves, he still remains
suspicious of all others.  This is especially true within the
party, where one of the other elves is quiet and a drow besides,
and the other is practically psychotic.
  His closest friend in the party is Mongo - the only one of the
good-aligned adventurers whose personality is compatible with
his own.  Ged detests Belphanior, because of his tendencies to
kill others.  He tolerates Halbarad and Peyote, thinking them
well-meaning but insipid.  Peldor is not to be trusted with any
form of treasure, but in the party's battles he has won the elf's
respect.  Ged does not care for Alindyar, due to the history of
the drow as a race, but has learned that his companion does not
fit the stereotype of the dark elf.  As for Rob, well, Ged has
long since decided that the priest is only occasionally sentient
and as such must be watched closely.

>-

Halbarad

  Furyondy, greatest of the benevolent nations of the Flanaess,
has long been at odds with its evil neighbors to the north.  At
times, the border towns are subject to attack from these other
lands, and such conflicts are usually quite bloody.  One small
town used to exist there, called Jharek.  It was a nice little
place, a center of bustling activity and commerce.  One young
lad who lived there was called Halbarad.  A bright boy, he was
innocent and happy, as most young children are.  Unfortunately,
his town was on the northern edge of the land, so it was no great
surprise when humanoids from the evil lands to the north descended
upon the area one morning.  The entire town was massacred - the
eight-year old Halbarad only survived because he hid himself away
in a hole and covered himself with dirt.  Orcs were never known
for their intelligence.
  Emerging from his shelter hours after the humanoids left, the
heartbroken youth vowed at that moment to exterminate the entire
orcish race, singlehandedly if need be.  He foraged through the
ruined town, finding food, water, and a sword, and journeyed
southward.  In the first city he arrived at, Halbarad went to
the warriors' guild and told them his story.  He also expressed
his desire to learn the art of weaponplay.  Feeling only pity
for the waif, one of the grizzled old warriors adopted the boy
as his son, for the veteran's actual children were long gone,
having made their way into the world as warriors.
  For the next sixteen years, Halbarad practiced with all sorts
of weapons.  He grew to be a strong, level-headed young man,
deadly in combat yet using his brain at the same time.  His old
mentor and foster father turned out to have been a woodsman,
and he eagerly passed on his skills and experience to his pupil.
  Upon the death of the veteran, Halbarad decided to move on.
He saw to the old man's possessions, giving them to good causes,
and left Furyondy, moving southward.  His activities between this
point and the party's formation in Fax are unclear, but one thing
is certain: no orc crossed his path and lived.
  Halbarad is currently unsure of his role in the party.  He used
to lead them, it seemed, but others have stepped forth recently
to wear that mantle.  He is good friends with Peyote, and not
only because of their common love of the wilderness.  They are
the only ones who can actually get along with each other at any
time, in any situation.  Halbarad does not like Belphanior at
all, for obvious reasons.  Sometimes he wishes that the elf
would accompany him into orcish lands, to serve the greater
good.  The ranger respects most of the others (except Peldor)
for their various abilities; he has grown particularly fond
of having Mongo at his side leading the party into battle.  He
always keeps a careful eye on the thief, and does not trust
him even as far as he can throw him.
  Halbarad has come to accept that even orcs have a right to
live, and will not usually slay them until they declare their
hostile intentions.  His hatred of the orcish race is balanced
by a love for all animals, which did not truly manifest itself
until his second year with the party.

>-

< Mongo, Peldor, Peyote, Rob  will appear at the end of part 44...>
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