Chapter #747

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                           +                   +
                         +                       +
                       +      THE ADVENTURERS      +
                         +                       +
                           +      Epic IV      +
                             +               +
                               +           +
                                 +       +
                                   +   +

+     Many of the locations, non-player characters, spells, and other     +
+   terms used in these stories are the property of TSR, Inc.  However,   +
+   TSR has in no way endorsed or authorized their use, and any such      +
+   items contained within these stories are not representative of TSR    +
+   in any fashion.                                                       +
+     The player characters depicted in these stories are copyright       +
+   1991-2001 by Thomas A. Miller.  Any resemblance to any persons        +
+   or characters either real or fictional is utterly coincidental.       +
+   Copying and/or distribution of these stories is permissible under     +
+   the sole condition that no money is made in the process.  In that     +
+   case, I hope you enjoy them!                                          +
+                                                                         +
+                                                      Thomas A. Miller   +
+   Alindyar        18th level drow wizard                                +
+   Daffodil        11th level human female druidess                      +
+   Deryck          11th level half-elven ranger                          +
+   Halbarad        15th level human ranger                               +
+   Lyra            14th level female drow wizard                         +
+   Nenya            9th/10th level female elven fighter/wizard           +
+   Peyote          12th/12th level half-elven fighter/druid              +
+   Rob             16th level human priest                               +
+   Date:           4/21/579 C.Y. (Common Year)                           +
+   Time:           morning                                               +
+   Place:          Rob's temple, outside the city of Gradsul, in Keoland +
+   Climate:        warm and pleasant                                     +
+   "Time is the fire in which we burn."                                  +
+                                     - from _Star Trek:  Generations_    +

                    DCCXLVII.  Finishing Touches

  After a discussion about how to best deal with their dangerous new foes,
the adventurers have been pursuing individual ends.  Rob had sequestered
himself away to commune with his deity, for the purpose of finding both
Xusia and Belphanior.  Peyote and Daffodil were seeking similar guidance
through their druidic connections.  Alindyar and Lyra were experimenting
with the crystal ball, seeing who and what they could see.  Deryck and
Halbarad were sparring like mad, pushing themselves and each other to the
limit in a heated mock combat in one courtyard of Rob's temple.  Nenya,
having borrowed a small room and some choice items, was attempting some
mending magic on the broken pieces of the statuette that used to be the
tiger Zephyr...

Nenya:  (finishes mixing some magical glue)  Hmm, that should do it.

  This sort of thing wasn't really the elven woman's area of expertise,
but she had to try, both because Halbarad's tiger was a powerful ally
and because the ranger was upset to the point of distraction.  One of
the best things that could happen for the group, as a whole, would be
the restoration of the enchanted figurine and the great animal that it
called forth.

Nenya:  (looks over the powders, pastes, potions, and other components
  scattered on the worktable in front of her)  Good thing Rob's temple
  is well-stocked.

  Finished talking to herself, Nenya began the final enchantment.  The
fragments of the statuette began to glow with power, and she prepared
to daub the special glue onto them.

  Meanwhile, Peyote and Daffodil were finding that information, at least
of the sort they needed, was hard to come by.

Peyote:  This bites!
Daffodil:  (gestures, irritably)  Shh.

  They were using a large puddle as a means of speaking with Obad-Hai's
master druid in this world, and Daffodil's father:  Oakly Greenleaf.
Wizards and perhaps priests of other deities would have used a basin,
mirror, or other device for such an end, but druids were bound to those
things that were natural - in this case, a puddle.

Oakly Greenleaf:  (appearing only as a large, scowling, bearded face in
  the water)  These things take time.  You must be patient.
Daffodil:  Father, you and I both know that patience is something you
  yourself never mastered.
Oakly Greenleaf:  And there was much violence because of it.  I'm not
  saying that you can't go after this evil - if anything, I'm all for
  it!  But you must plan carefully, if these foes are even half as
  powerful as you suggest.
Peyote:  But we have to know where they are, first.
Oakly Greenleaf:  And you shall.  In time.  For now, you must wait.
Daffodil:  Wait?!?  Why?  And for how long?  This is no time to wait!
  What are we supposed to do?!?
Oakly Greenleaf:  (gazes at her sternly)
Daffodil:  ...forgive me.
Oakly Greenleaf:  You are your father's daughter, no doubting it.  (his
  expression softens somewhat)  Even now, your companions are working
  to find the various answers you seek.  My role - and that of Obad-Hai
  as well - shall come further down this path you have chosen.
Daffodil:  (muttering to herself)  Chosen?
Peyote:  So we should go talk with our friends?
Oakly Greenleaf:  I assure you of this:  by day's end, you will be well
  on your way to the answers you seek.  I must go now.  Both of you...
  take care, and always walk the grassy road.  (he fades out, leaving
  only a rippling puddle)
Daffodil:  (sighs)
Peyote:  So what kind of a dad was he?  Growing up, I mean?


Alindyar:  So Rillen and Songa are in Greyhawk...excellent.
Lyra:  You think they'll come along with us on this?
Alindyar:  Who can say?  At least it gives us more potential
Lyra:  You won't get Peldor, you know that.
Alindyar:  Aye.
Lyra:  Too bad we couldn't locate Belphanior or Mongo.  I wonder
  where they could be?
Alindyar:  In trouble, no doubt.  Though it irks me greatly, I hope
  that Rob is able to locate them.  We can use their help, and before
  that, perhaps they can use ours.
Lyra:  We'll soon know.  Look.

  Rob had emerged from his inner sanctum, re-appearing for the first time
in about a day.  He looked inspired.

Rob:  Good news - I have found the evildoers!
Lyra:  You'd better not tell Halbarad.
Rob:  We shall see.  Xusia and his allies occupy a mountain fortress,
  far to the north and east.
Alindyar:  Where?
Rob:  In due time.
Alindyar:  Do not try my patience.  Not all of us are brash and rash, and
  I for one prefer to be privy to this sort of information.
Rob:  And you will - soon.  We need to talk with the others first, though.
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  This one tries my patience.
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  Let's just see what he's got up his sleeve.
Rob:  Come.  Let us find the others.


Rob:  I have much in the way of news, but we must all be present.
Deryck:  (looking around)  Where's Nenya?
Rob:  (smiles)  She'll be along shortly.
Deryck:  Oh.
Halbarad:  Do we have to wait for her?
Nenya:  You might want to.  (she enters the chamber and walks over to
  join the others)  Oh, by the way, look who I found.
Zephyr:  (bounds through the archway leading into this chamber)  Rrrrrr!

  The look on Halbarad's face was pure joy to behold.  He and the tiger
had been through countless journeys and battles, and the animal's loss
after the recent battle had been akin to that of a lifelong friend.

Halbarad:  (hugs the tiger, who looks somewhat sheepish)!?
Nenya:  A special spell of mending, one designed for magical items.  It
  wasn't easy, and it took some time, but...(she spreads her hands)
Halbarad:  (stands, coming face-to-face with the elven woman)  I owe you
  a great debt.  Know that I shall not rest until it is repaid, fully, no
  matter the cost.
Nenya:  It's okay, really-  (she sees the seriousness in his gaze and is
Halbarad:  I'm glad you understand.
Rob:  And with that out of the way, let me share the guidance of Trithereon
  on the overall matter.
Deryck:  He wants us to go forth and destroy our foes, right?
Rob:  First, we must make a journey.
Peyote:  We must?
Rob:  Yes, we must.  Alindyar, I suspect, has pondered what I am about to
Alindyar:  (ESPing to Lyra)  What the hell is he talking about?
Lyra:  (ESPing to Alindyar)  Beats me.
Rob:  We must venture to Greyhawk...for only there will we be able to speak
  with the Circle of Eight...and gain their support in this endeavor.

next:      the Circle of Eight
released:  6/11/01
notes:     The scope of this arc is growing faster than I first thought
  it would.  I have a partially-done accessory that pertains to the Xusia
  crew and their lair.  I will try to time its release (even if it's not
  fully done) for maximum effect.

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