Player Stories

A Most Unholy Feeling by Daedra on 22 Jun 2009 : 03:56
One night while hunting a strange feeling overcame me...



My cloak as black as midnight

And locks of deep crimson red

Quite a cleric of the light

To release the undead

My power was measured

And my will was weighed

The mana I treasured

The spells I made

I threw my hand

So the power it lashed

And I cast to the land

The undead, brutal and bashed



The power it coursed

Right through my veins

In my heart it forced

I pulled on the reigns

To leash my craving

so unholy and rare

the power, it was raving

I began to scare

I wrapped my arms

Straight across my chest

And held to my charms

To keep sanity was best



My lips set in a grim smile

My eyes twinkled brilliantly

And for that little while

The Rogue, he looted diligently

He turned to her and smiled with glee

"These skulls shall fetch.."

He paused to see

In the light he sure did catch

What one would never expect

A glimmer of grim delight

An image he thought incorrect

"Surely" he thought" this is not right"



The Cemetary was cleared

And all the undead laid to rest

Back to town they steered

To sleep tonight was best

As cleric I did ponder a bit

While striding my way to town

In my room, only a candle was lit

As I laid my head down

I blew the flame out

And soon began to dream

Trying to figure it out

My soul began to scream

No rest for this unholy cleric tonight

Something inside truely is not right..
A favor for Eleswyr by Eleswyr on 17 Jun 2009 : 21:58
A druid is disturbed from her arboreal meditations...





Melting from the forest

Comes a druid clad in brown

In her hand a paper:

A summons from the town



Her dear friend, a cleric

Had written her a word

Aethyx wrote to warn her

Of a story he had heard



Pushing wide a heavy door

To the judge's bench came near

He looked up distractedly,

"Name?" She said, "Eleswyr."



The magistrate rose, silent

And gave the girl a glower

He sniffed haughtily

She smelled of earth and flowers



"You've racked up some debts

Thats the story that I've heard--"

(Oh have I?)

"--And all your friends have left you:

Fluttered like some birds."

(Oh have they?)



Suddenly there entered

A girl as pale as whey

She plead with the magistrate

For more time so she could pay



Eleswyr turned to study

This chit who stole her name

Those vacant eyes revealed the way

To resolve this game



"Your honor, here is the tusker Babar

Well-known are his scars

You'll see he follows my commands

Though claimed dead by some self-styled bard."



The judge sat down, deflated.

"I can see that I've been fleeced.

I'll let you decide her fate;

But hey! I need my piece!"



Carelessly she tossed to him

A bag of full of eggs from snakes.

"As for you girl," she said,

Turning swiftly to the fake:



"Too bad you lack my charm and wit

and my manner bold,

And though you are a lying git..."

The druid paused for thought.



"We look alike enough to pass

Your fair face should suffice

For some men that is enough

To live with all their life.



"So keep your husband, keep the gold,

Keep slaves and manor fair

A druid needs not these things

But water, leaf, and air.



"So in your shallowness please savor

and enjoy your captivity

In return I have one favor...

Keep that creep away from me!"
Of Petals and Poison by Krispos on 17 Jun 2009 : 21:57
The youth began his walk idly, taking simplistic joy in the air wrapping around him, the sky above him, and the blooming flowers bellow. He could reach his hands down touch them, graze his finger tips along their silken, glossy surface. The flowers were abloom in every shape, size, and color. Patterns crisscrossed, swirled, and adorned the many different petals to make a sea of dazzling display. If the youth were to get close enough, he would notice how distinct the flowers were, even carrying their own scent. Walking the fields of endless petals, countless flowers, the youth saw a few stand out amongst the sea. He had toyed with thoughts of studying the flowers, of how sweet they must smell, of how nice they must look up close.... but none ever pulled him far enough from his walk to warrant inspection.



That was until one step brought him to the path of a rather wonderful flower. This flower carried such sweet joy with it when the youth would see it on his path. The flower merely nodded it's vibrant petals with the wind, a simple hello and have a good day. However, the fragrant wisps followed him. He had seen it only once, but on down the road, the wind carried the sweet scents to his senses on multiple occasions. He finally decided to break his path to find this flower, determined to wave a hello and repay the joyful greeting that had graced his path earlier.



This detour of his led the youth into many encounters with this flower of beauty. They're greetings turned from various discussions of the weather, to how each others days were... casual chatter. But one thing was so surprising to this youth, how the flower always smiled it's petals. It was always happy, cheerful and laughing. It was quite contageous. After a while of growing so fond of this flower, it's radiant petals and joyful air were so addicting. The youth couldn't help put tease the precious thing. Plucking at it's petals, never injuring it, just teasing the flower to see it's laughing reaction. This is how they carried on, both teasing one another, growing fonder, playing around and finding out more about each other. Until the fondness grew into a slight obsession, thinking about one another until their paths crossed and not wanting to continue walking. Time was a hindrance, the path a means to see one another.



Eventually, the fond obsession grew into an over whelming desire to taste the honey that welled up in the petals of the flower, it smelled so sweet and was so full of laughter, the youth had to taste it. He knew the honey was not his to drink, that the flower carried thorns on it, but it didn't mean to. It retracted it's thorns and opened it's petals, inviting the youth in to drink and be at peace. The youth, in his weak, selfish greed knew the thorns would still bite him, but sought after the honey anyway. He would meet the flower, and the flower him. They would dance around with laughter, drinking and being drunk on one another for joy. Nearly every time the dances finished, even before they began, the youth would remember the thorns that made Him bleed, what he was doing, and had to deny this precious flower what it sought. The youth was to blinded and naive, too greedy and selfish to make a choice. When the flower was denied the dance, the youth was hurt, wanting to bring the flower peace. He would continue dancing when he was compelled by the flower's offering of joy and hurt for having robbed the petals of their peace. Yet he was also compelled by the thorns that struck blood far deeper in his heart, striking Him so painfully. The youth knew his life would not allow these dances their continuance, but was far to weak to make a choice and stick with it.



Every time the youth refused the flower, it would burn away a piece of a petal, wilting it's beautiful joy. The youth did not see it, did not care, only loved to see what joyful grace the flower radiated, only the honey that tasted so sweet. It was not long before the flower had all the dancing of flame that it could take, denying the youth any peace, any joy, any laughter. For the flower was not just through with the youth, but it was burned beyond recognition and repair, singed with greed, apathy, naivety, and foolishness that the youth had so disrespected the flower with. It was truly revolting. The youth did not at all wish to see the flower in the state it was in, but did not realize just how tarnished he had made the precious thing. It was not until the flower brought forth the daggers of truth and pierced the youth through, that he realized just how foolish he had been. Just how much joy he had robbed the flower of. He did not realize that the flower gave it's beautiful petals to the youth, that it was so much more precious to the flower than it was to him.



The youth had nothing to do, nothing to say, nothing by which he could repair the brokenness of the flower. Only the cold realization of how cruel he had been. Dancing and drinking of the flower's sweet generosity and kindness, while also slicing it open when he denied it. Eventually pulling away from the burned petals enough times to break the fragrant flower apart, taking forever a wound that was never his to take. The youth did not weep, did not lose his appetite, did not cry out for relief, only attempted to bring the flower it's peace.



The youth's words were no longer just burning the flower, but pouring forth poison to rot away the torn, bruised, and flamed petals, down to the stalk his words seeped. It's true, sadly enough, that the youth played with the flower, and burned it. The flower was honest and sincere, joyous and generous, always there for the youth and only seeking mutual sincerity. The youth was partook of the flower for it's sweet honey, it's fragrant petals, and it's laughter, but never for the flower itself. The flower is more than an object, it is a precious gem, meant to be held up and adorned with whatever the youth can offer it. Not to be a play thing for a greedy child.



The youth finally realizes his poisonous tongue, his leaching lips, his burning, consuming greed that injures these precious petals that are all around him. This was not the first flower, not by far, and so long as the youth is capable of will, it will be the last. The youth's lips will seal the poison inside, the scorching pain deep inside of himself until his desire is true, sincere, and with out thorns. Then, it may just pour forth as a wonderful sap of life, to blossom and fruit the ground with flowers itself. But he will always, hopes he will always carry the vat of poison inside of him to remember what it has done to the precious flower around him. He can't let himself forget what his childishness has done. He can never forget the story of petals and poison.
A Little Tale of Robert Hood-- The Second Fit by RobertHood on 16 Jun 2009 : 23:51
~Herein follows the story of that kind Druid called Eleswyr. Enjoy!~Now the Druid had gone her way. This game she thought quite good. When she looked back into the wood, she blessed Robert Hood.

When she thought about her state and how she was forlorn, she also thought of Mliza, Daedra and Bjorn. She blessed them for their company, for the luck she had borne.



Then spoke the gentle Druid, to Mliza she did say, Tomorrow I must go to Mirith's monastery and give the man his pay. Hes the high Cleric of that place, and four hundred thousand gold pieces I must deliver. If Im not there by tomorrow night, my land is lost forever.



The Cleric of Mirith said to his convent, as he stood there in peace, Two Moons ago a Druid came here and borrowed four hundred thousand gold a piece. She borrowed four hundred thousand gold for all of her land that was free. If she doesnt come this very day, then disinherited she will be.



Its too early, said his student. The day is not far gone. Id rather pay a hundred thousand and lie down soon. The Druid is far across the sea, in Andris is her right. She suffers hunger and cold, and many a sorrowful night. It would be a great pity to have her land this way. If you choose to have a light conscience, youll surely do her wrong today.



Youre always in my beard, said the Cleric. By the Goddess and Borigard!

With that in came a fat-headed monk, the high steward.

She is dead or jailed, said the monk, By the Goddess that brought me dear, and we shall have to spend in this place four hundred thousand a year!



The Cleric and the high steward started forth bold. The high justice of Oberin, the Cleric there did hold. The high justice and many more had taken into their hands all of the Druids debt, so they could have that Druids land.



They wouldnt give the Druid a minute, that Cleric and his men.

Unless she comes this very day, she loses all her land.



She wont come soon, said the justice. We dont have long to wait.

But quite to their dismay, she came walking to the gate.



Then said the gentle Druid, to all her Guards said she, Now put on your simple robes that you brought from the sea.

They put on their simple robes and came to the gates soon. The porter was ready to let them in and welcomed them everyone.



Welcome, Lady Druid, said the porter. My lord to measure is true. And so are many gentlemen, all for the love of you.

The porter swore quite a great oath, By the Game Masters that made me, here is the best cursed Hound that I ever yet did see. Lead them to the stable, he said. So they will all be rested.

Theyll not go in there, said the Druid, By the Good Lady that has ascended.



The lords had gone to measure inside that Clerics hall. The Druid went forth and kneeled and saluted them great and small.



How do you do, sir Cleric, said the Druid. Ive come to hold my day.

The first words the Cleric spoke were, Have you brought my pay?



Not one gold piece, said the Druid, By the Game Masters that made me.

You are a shrewd debtor, said the Cleric. Sir justice, drink to me.



What are you doing here, said the Cleric, If you didnt bring your pay?

For the Goddess, then said the Druid, To pray for a longer day.



Your day is broke, said the justice. You cant pay what you owe.

Now good sir justice, be my friend, and defend me from my foes.



I hold with the Cleric, said the justice. He gave me clothes and a fee.

Now good sir, be my friend.

No, by Charnath, said he.



Now good sir Cleric, be my friend, and show me some courtesy. And hold my lands in your hand until we can all agree. And I will be your true servant and serve you faithfully, until you have four hundred gold of money, good and free.



The Cleric swore quite a great oath. By our Lady who ascended from the bay, get the land where you may, for youll get none from me.



By dear, Brave Elara, then said the Druid. That all this world has wrought, if I ever have my land again, in full it shall be bought. Elara that was of maiden born, grant us all Her help. For it is good to help a friend when she cannot help herself.



The Cleric loathely looked on her, and then names he began to call.

Out, he said, you false Druid, Get out of my hall.



You lie, then said the gentle Druid, Cleric, in your own hall. A false Druid I never was, by the Game Masters that made us all.



Up then stood that gentle Druid. To the Cleric said she, To suffer a lady to kneel so long, you show no courtesy. In hunts and in PvP tournaments, always fair I have been, and put myself thick in the fight as any Ive ever seen.



A hundred thousand gold, said the Cleric.

The justice said, Give her two.

No, by Charnath, said the Druid. Youll not get it so. Though you give me a thousand more, yet you were never the nearer. You shall never be my heir, Cleric, or justice, in a year!



She started for the table then, and there took out a bag. An even four hundred thousand gold pieces was its tag.



Here is your gold, sir Cleric, said the Druid, Which you loaned to me. Had you been courteous at my coming, rewarded you would be.



The Cleric sat still and said no more, because he sat with his noble fare. He cast his head on his shoulders and fast began to stare.



Give me my gold, said the Cleric, Sir justice, that I gave away.

Not one piece, said the justice, By our Lady who ascended by the bay.



Sir Cleric and you men of law, now I have surely held my day. Now I shall have my land again, no matter what you say.



The Druid walked out the door. Gone was all her care. She put on her good robe. The others she left there.

She went forth merrily singing, as men have told in the past. Her husband met her at the gate, at home in Port Gast.



Welcome back, my lady, said her lord. Have you lost your goods?

Be glad, husband, said the Druid. And pray for Robert Hood. That he ever shall be in bliss. Hes helped you and me. Had it not been for his kindness, beggars we would be.

She continued. The Cleric and I are settled. Hes got all his pay. The good Ranger loaned it to me as I came by the way.



This Druid then stayed at home, doing what she could until she had four hundred thousand gold to pay back Robert Hood. She bought a hundred bows, the strings were furnished right. A hundred sheaths of arrows gold, the heads were burnished bright. And every arrow forty and five inches long, with Harpie feathers bright, nocked all with fiery orange. It was a handsome sight.



She got a hundred servants and decked them out alike, and she dressed herself in the same hue, in a bright colored robe of blue.

She held a leash in hand, light glistened off her pets tail. She ran with a light song along the forest trail.



But as she came to a wooden bridge, she stopped awhile to watch. The best Rangers of the west were there having an archery match. A very fun game it was. A carven Game Master statue of wood was put up, a great Dragon with teeth of ivory tusk and King Galandirs missing gold cup.

A Pair of Green Boots, a Lesser Protection Ring, a Mug of Alethe play: The man that proves himself the best shall bear the prize away.



There was a Ranger in that place, and the worthiest one was he. But because he was a stranger there, slain he soon would be.



The Druid had pity on this Ranger, in the place where he stood. He said that Ranger should have no harm, for love of Robert Hood.



The Druid walked into the place, a hundred followed her free, with bows bent and arrows sharp to part that company.



They shouldered all and made her room to see what she would say. She took the Ranger by the arm and awarded him the play.



She gave him five gold pieces for his ale, there it lay on the ground, and bad would it sit with anyone who would try to drink it now.



A long time stayed this kind and generous Druid, right until that game was through, but alas, Robert was kept waiting and fasting three hours after noon.

Is there a sky in Oberin? by tenskulls on 16 Jun 2009 : 23:46
A small story I wrote when I was bored. All events are fictional and all grammatical missteps intentional. And to the GM that reads this- please don't re-enact any of this with my character. And the title is a little random and not hugely related to the story. Hope you all enjoy it!!!





I look at my monitor. Aren is standing at a busy bank. I see a chorus of voices on screen. Hi aren they all seem to say. I stare at the pixilated names trying to recognize one. I fail to recognize anyone. I would try to immerse myself in a conversation, but I dont feel up to it. Some people I know are on. I drag my mouse over and click on my orb of seeing. I type the names in.

-nothing-

I try another one.

too far west. They must be in the ID. I could just wait around the bank but that would be boring. The other group of players are all speaking Japanese. shame I cant speak back to them. I have time so I sink down and really immerse myself in game. I am no longer me. I am Aren. I quickly pack my bag and set out for Lizard Isle. after all Aren/Me likes to fight lizardmen. I suppose I/Aren is a simple person.



I eventually reach the edge of land, the cool sea breeze rustling through my hair. I slide my helmet on to my head and begin to assemble my raft. From a few logs to raft in a few seconds and I begin to sail. The weather is nice as it normally is under the dancing moon. I look towards the smooth horizon. It is perfectly flat, not a wave in sight. Bad. This means sea serpents. I finger the potions in my bag carefully. Although the waters are known to be infested with sea serpents I had managed to avoid injury. And that was by being vigilant. I feel something under my raft, moving quickly and creating a swell. I pull a potion out of my bag and immediately chug it. I can feel the burning liquid spiral down my throat. A tingling begins at the tip of my toes and spreads to the rest of my body within milliseconds. I know I am safe, that nothing can see me. If I stay absolutely still. I feel the swell again and the creature emerges on the other side. Its a turtle. I blink and begin laughing.



I soon recover my nerves and begin sailing again. This time I havent gone far before I see a real threat. too late. The beast is upon me with great jaws clashing together. As I tilt the raft backwards, I dodge the multitude of teeth, and swiveling my glaive from my back, deliver a blow to the beast. It recoils in pain, and I begin to paddle my raft in earnest. I pay no head to the beast behind me, I know if I can keep concentrated I can outrun it. And the others. They are coming at me from all angles as I paddle furiously. I can see land in the distance. I swerve my body as one of the beasts lunges. A cracking sound and a shower of splinters. I hold on to what remains of my raft for dear life. I cant see or hear the serpents anymore.



Tentatively I push my foot downwards. Panic, it hits something. Relief, it is sand. I stand up fully. My armour weighs me down as I trudge towards the shore. I sit myself on the shore of a desolate island. A single palm provides some shade. My armour is rusting, my raft is broken and I am stranded, miles from anywhere else. There is no one to help me and no one who will know I have gone. I look to the sky and curse the gods. There is no sky. I look out of the sky and into my face.



I shake my head and open up my IM. I keep a careful eye on the Oberin window in case the GMs decide to continue playing with me. I type out a message to a friend:

Hey need you to orb me and bring me a raft. GMs decided to destroy mine

I wait impatiently for the response.

The reply says that they will be there in a few minutes. I tap my desk and move my pointer to the invisibility potions. Aren has now disappeared from the screen. I lean back in my chair, waiting, and wondering if there is a sky in Oberin.

A Little Tale of Robert Hood-- The First Fit by RobertHood on 14 Jun 2009 : 09:07
~Herein is the Lay of a Ranger named Robert Hood~

This is a reproduction of mine, and a satirical writing of sorts. Enjoy!

Stop and listen everybody, this story's pretty good! It's all about a bold Ranger. His name was Robert Hood.



Robert was a wise hunter while he walked on the ground. So courteous a Ranger was seldom ever found.



Robert stood in the forest and leaned against a tree. And by him stood Mliza, a good archer was she. And also did good Asbjorn, the Fighter, and Daedra, the tailor's daughter.



Then Mliza spoke directly to Robert Hood, "Master, if you would dine soon, it would do you a lot of good."



Then spoke good Robert, "I have no wish to dine, until I have some bold Ranger or some unknown guest. Until I have some wealthy Cleric that can pay for the best, or some Fighter or some Rogue that lives here in the west."



Robert had some good habits in the land where he stayed. Everyday before he ate, he would say three prayers. One in the worship of the Game Masters, and another of the GoD of Ghosts, and the third of our dear Lady Elara that he loved the most.



Robert loved our dear Lady. For fear of deadly judgment, he would never do any hunting party harm that any woman was in.



"Master," then said the Ranger Mliza, "if we're to spread the word, tell us where we should go and what we can afford. Where we shall take, where we shall leave, where we shall stay behind. Where we shall loot, where we shall kill, where we shall beat and bind."



"Not so much force," said Robert. "We'll get enough somehow. But see that you harm no demo that mines with his axe or fishes with his pole. Nor any good Ranger that walks by the sea cove. Nor any good friend, like a Fighter or Rogue."



Thus continued Robert. "These greedy healers and high Clerics, those you need to beat, bind and loot. Do remember well the high Cleric of Brigobaen."



"We shall remember this," said Mliza. "And we shall remember this lesson. It is late in the day, Goddess, send us a guest, so we can get to our dinner!"



"Grab your bow," said Robert. "And let Daedra and Asbjorn follow you. I need to be alone for awhile. And while you are at it, travel down to the East Mirithian Gate, and wait to meet a passing stranger. Whether he or she may be Druid or Rogue, Cleric, Fighter, Wizard or Ranger, bring that person to me at the big oak tree. His or her dinner shall be on the fire."



They all went down to Mirith. They looked east and west but saw nobody. But off the beaten road, they peered into the brush and spotted a Druid running. They soon met up with her.



Her countenance seemed to be all dreary, but she had little pride. Her Tusker had suffered a horrible death at the bolts of three Bracken in the underbrush just minutes before. Her dark hood hung over her eyes. Her Robe of Resistance was in simple array. Torn a bit and ragged thin, she still stood beautiful in the glow of the moonlight. But never a girl sounded more sorrowful than she did that night.



In courtesy, Mliza got down on her knee and said, "Welcome, gentle Druid, welcome to Mirith. My master has been waiting and fasting during the last three long hours for you Mistress."



"Who is your master," said the Druid.

"Robert Hood, a Ranger," she said.

"He is a good Ranger," said the Druid. "I have heard a lot of good things about him. I will agree to go with you, although I was planning to dine in Lerilin or Mirith tonight."

The gentle Druid followed them in quite a sorrowful state. The tears ran out of her eyes and fell down her face.



They brought her to the forest entrance, and there found Sir Hood. In courtesy, the Ranger took off his hood and got down on his knee. "Welcome pretty lady," he said. "I have waited and fasted for you these three long hours."



The gentle Druid replied, "The Goddess save you, good Robert, and also your very kind friends."

They found the river and washed and wiped off together, then sat down for dinner. They had plenty of bread and ale, and then the best parts of the Gaper. They also ate Harpie and Sea Turtle from the nearby river. They didn't leave out any part of the Harpie that was ever bred on Bracken.



"Eat up, Druid," said Robert.

"Thank you, sir," she said. "I haven't had such a plentiful dinner in three weeks!"

"Thank you miss," said Hood. "When eating dinner, I have never been so greedy for the sake of my dear Lady Moon. With food, I can take it or leave it.

"But do pay before you go. I think it's only fair," continued the Ranger. "It was never quite the manner for a Ranger to pay a Druid to eat his wild game."



"I have nothing in my inventory that I may offer, except ten gold pieces," said the Druid.

"Mliza, go look," said Hood. "And don't leave out anything."



"Tell me the truth," said Robert, "So the Goddess may have pity on you."

"I have no more than ten gold pieces," said the Druid, "So the Goddess have pity on me."



"If you honestly have no more," said Hood, "I will not touch one piece. And if you need any more, then I shall loan you more. Drop your inventory, Druid. And now, Mliza, if you could find the truth for me. I need you to look in the satchel and see if there is any such gold hiding in the bundle."



Mliza spread her robe flat out over the ground. She looked the bag over and found no more than ten gold pieces. She then left it lying on the ground and went to her master.

"What did you find, Mliza?" said Hood.

"Sir, the Druid is true enough."



"Pour out the best ale," said Robert. "It will go no further than me. I think you were raised a Druid of nothing, or at least outcast from a simple village life."



"Nothing of that is true," said the gentle Druid. "A thousand Moons ago, my ancestors had been Beast Tamers.



She continued. "But, often as it has happened, Robert, a woman will be disgraced. But the Goddess that sits in Moon above, may amend her state. Within these two Moons, Robert, my friends know full well, how I spent one million gold pieces, and not all of it on myself. Now I have no money or goods. I suppose this is how the Goddess has arranged it. So all I have now is my husband and children, until the Goddess decides to change it. Indeed, Robert, I had a son that should have followed in his father's footsteps as a mighty Fighter. When he was just two Moons old, he would always go to the local cemetery and jostle with the cursed undead. In Andris, he slew a Guard in the street and a local Cleric of that city who had rushed and tried to heal the Guard before it was too late. So to save my son from jail I had to gather and sell all my goods. I thought to mortgage my cottage and the surrounding woodland to the father of that Cleric, who lives near here in Mirith's monastery. And for the slain Guard, I must compensate the Red City for its loss in some way.



"How much do you owe?" said Hood.

"Four hundred thousand gold pieces," she said. "The Cleric wants his pay immediately, or off with my head.



"And if you lose your land, said Robert, "What will happen to you?"

"I will have to flee and take a raft across the salty sea, where Elara lived and ascended above the sandy bay. So farewell, friend. Have a good day. It may get no better."

Tears fell out of her eyes. She would have gone her way.

"Farewell, friends, and have a good day. I honestly have no more to pay."



"Where are your friends?" said Robert.

"Sir, not one of them knows me now. When I was rich at home, they would always compliment me on how they liked me so much. And now they all run away from me, like Harpies all in a row. They ignore me as if they don't know me."



In hearing this story, Mliza started to weep in pity for this poor girl and her fate. Daedra and Asbjorn couldn't help but follow suit.



"Pour out the best ale," said Robert. "Indeed, here is a poor friend. Are you sure you don't have any other friend that could help you out?"



"I have none," said the Druid. "Except our Lady who has ascended."

"Put away your jokes," said Robert. "Here you will find none. Who then shall the Goddess borrow it from, Ybarra, Nystal or Aemon? No, find me a better sponsor, or you will get no money from me."



"I have nothing," said the Druid, "Unless it comes from our dear Lady of the Moon. She has not failed me to this day."



"By dear Brave Elara," said Robert. "In searching throughout all of fair Oberin I have never found a better sponsor of my money than She. Come here, Mliza. Go to our treasury and bring me four hundred thousand gold pieces. Make sure you have counted it correctly."



So Mliza went with Asbjorn ahead of her to the hollow oak chamber. He counted out four hundred thousand gold pieces.

"Is this counted well?" said Daedra.

Mliza said, "What is wrong with you? All of this is to help that poor girl who fell into poverty."



Mliza went unto her master.

"Master, continued Mliza, "Her clothing is very thin. I think we should give the poor girl some good robes to wrap her body in. I know you have a lot of red and green. Many that cost a lot of money. It is true that there is no tailor in Oberin who I dare say is so rich. Let her have three yards of every color, and see if that works."



Mliza could think of no other standard measure except by using her Long Bow of Speed. Every handful she got, she counted it as a yard.



Daedra said, "What kind of robe measurer do you think you are?"

Asbjorn stood still and laughed and said, "By Charnath almighty, Mliza is doing fine. There's not much cost in doing it this way."



"Master," then said Mliza to kind Robert Hood. "I think you should give this Druid a Giant Ant to carry home this stuff."



"She can have that fiery red one in the stable," said Robert. "It's the one that has the new leather straps on its back. He is our Lady Moon's messenger. May She grant he make it safely home."



"And a good warrior Ant," said Daedra. "To protect her in the wild."

"And a pair of Brown Boots," said Asbjorn. "Because she is such a kind Druid."



"What shall you give her, Mliza?" said Robert.

"Sir, a pair of Leather Arms, so I may pray they keep her from less harm."



"When shall the day be?" said the Druid. "Whenever you wish me to come?"

"This day, twelve Moons from now," said Robert. "Under this same oak tree."

"It would be a great shame," said Hood, "For a Mistress Druid to walk to her house alone without a maid to take care of her needs. I will lend you Mliza, my best archer, and she will be your maid for a time."



"May the Goddess shine upon you," said the Druid. "I thank you for helping me with my problem here."



"Before you leave, what is your name?" said Sir Hood.



"It is something you should hear, for my name is Eleswyr."





Of Druids and Dragon Scales by RobertHood on 10 Jun 2009 : 00:41
I want to let everyone know I am not playing Oberin anymore, but every now and then I'll still write a few tales for all you folk's enjoyment. As you can see, this is about a Druid and journey through the forests of Oberin. Enjoy

~Of Druids and Dragon Scales~



Askah ran through the forests, his breath coming in ragged gasps as he plugged away. He was going uphill now into his brother's country.
His brother had been an outcast, for it was at birth that a poisonous root had scarred the babe at birth. As he aged, peculiar boils started to spring from the boy. Ravenous roots seemed to devour his hands and feet. Clerics from as far as Marali would pass by the village in awe to see to the boy, and none could find a remedy. Alas, the boy was thrown to the beasts in the wild, but the forest loved and nurtured him, and at last the Harpies came to him...


But alas, now a deadly plague swept through the land. Askah knew his brother though would be able to save them so special scales had to be fetched. Askah could almost see the sickness like a fiendish Hell Hound snarling over the cradles, lapping at the sides of everyone's bed just waiting for them to fall into the deep sleep of death.
Suddenly with a twang and a snap Askah found himself hoisted into a tree, before he could see that he was caught like a Giant Rat, in a trap a branch collided with his forehead sending him into darkness.

"There there, it's alright you'll soon feel all better." 
Askah shivered with cold, he pulled the blankets appreciatively over his shoulders moaning as someone placed a cool cloth upon his head. "Roland, I need to find Roland." He murmured.
"I thought as much, Aesa pull the cloth away, let me hurl him from the highest peak off the mountains of Duldrus!"
The first voice, the kind one spoke again still in the same soothing tone. "There there, no one will hurt you. Just get some rest."
The cloth came down over Askah's eyes but before they could block his vision, in his delirium, it seemed he saw the face of Elura, wings of chocolate sprouting from her back. He couldn't help the panic that passed over his face, he had either died or found his brother's home.

 Aesa promptly folded the cowl over her head. "You may toss me off the peak if you wish husband, I shall not allow blood feuds to take the lives of anyone."
Roland sighed. "I have been to the village Aesa, in the dead of night. They're dying from the sickness; he has brought with him the plague. "


"It is the goddesses' decree then that he should come so our family can be together. Roland," She placed her hand upon the tip of his cheek. "There is a destiny in all of us, you were not born a Dragon. You and I have been made for something much greater."
"What are we Aesa? Open your eyes and look at yourself as humans do, we are some freak of nature! Our children run with the wind through their leaves, and you call that a gift? I call it a curse, they will never be able to walk into the village and have people accept them or love them like our kind does."
Asia's gentle laugh rang off of the mountain peaks nearest them. "I call it a gift, I don't really care what human's think either way. They were not there when They were forming me. You shouldn't care either, our Mother loves you, I love you, and our children love you. That's all that matters."
Roland snapped his limbs out. "That's not enough for me though." He took two running steps before throwing himself off the tip of the cloister and into the ravine below.

Askah was awake enough to pull the cloth away from his eyes. He saw the same dark figure looking down upon him, soup bowl in hand. 
"I thought you would like something to refresh you."
"No I must find Roland, he's my brother and the village...needs him."
"My husband isn't here at the moment, Askah. Yes Roland told me about his little brother, I'm Aesa." She tried to spoon feed him but Askah took the bowl from her and set it aside.
"I must tell you of the danger you are now in. I came to speak with Roland about a sickness in the village. I may have it though I haven't shown any of the symptoms yet. You could be infected too."
"So be Her will." Asia said taking up the bowl again. "If we get sick then we should be strong to face it. My husband will soon be back, but Askah, he is still sore from what the village did to him. You must show him why, you must show him your love." With that the woman stood, her long dark limbs draping behind her like a cape as she walked off to attend to one of her children.
Askah was an observer that day to life in the high mountains. Aesa stayed home with her two small children. One seemed nearing ten while the other was only six, always scrapping his barked limbs on things as he ran around the cave.
At first Askah had been frightened, he had only known his brother a short while before he had been taken away. The limbs unnerved him greatly, especially when the youngest sibling would crawl around wriggling his fingers like when a hairless Giant Spider hatchling eats corpse flies.


But soon he began to see they were merely humans with multi-layered marvelous appendages. They were indeed magnificent formations. 
Later in the evening Askah had grown bolder to ask questions about Aesa. "So is my brother well?"
"He certainly is, Askah."
Askah couldn't remember what she had called herself from earlier. "What does he do to provide for you?" 
"He hunts, Askah." Asia "shhed" him as she picked up her youngest child and then started the dinner. 
"Does Roland remember me?" Askah asked.
"Aye boy I remember you." A deep thunderous voice filled the cavern. 
Two little children bound from their mother's arms and side to try knocking their father down. They hopped and skipped, flaying their limbs as they tried to take flight in the small cavern. "Papa's home! Papa's home!'

Roland threw up his hands to ward off his two young boys. "Wait until I've pruned." He said sternly brushing the boys aside with his blood stained paws.
Askah was awaiting the normal reaction for a blood covered man, but it never came, his wife simply continued to make dinner after she had welcomed Roland with a kiss and a heart felt safe return home. Askah stood to see if he could be more useful after receiving a hateful glance from his brother. 
As soon as dinner was ready they all sat around a low table of stone, having to squat upon the ground to eat at it. Askah was sitting directly opposite to his brother, he tried hard to ignore the uncomfortable stare he was receiving. 
"So my little brother, how are your studies going?"
Askah looked up, relieved to have a kind word said to him. "They go well." He tried smiling but Roland had a dark stormy look about him.
"Really? Tell me what you've learned. No rather let me question you about your level of learning. Does that sound fair?"
"Yes, of course."
"Alright, now you study spells in school? Spell for me Calm."
Askah was puzzled, he managed to mumble out the spelling though. "C-A-L-M"
Aesa murmured a low. "Roland..."
"No no, I can see the boy is a master." Roland jested in a sneering voice. "Now boy, how about your numbers? What does 1 Amber plus 1 Volcanic Ash equal? "
Askah was still numbed, he could feel anger and sadness welling inside his chest. He had always admired his older brother's memory and now here was the real idol in front of him mocking his intelligence. "Night Vision." He said unsure of whether to lunge across the table and trying fighting his older brother or crying. 
"Good, very good. I see the village schools have worked wonders for you."
Nothing else was allowed to be said at the dinner table.
Askah laid down upon the cot they had provided for him, he could hear Aesa and Roland arguing in the other cavern about the conversation at dinner that night. Askah allowed but one tear to roll down his burning cheek. It was growing apparent that Roland wouldn't bother helping Askah even if he gained the courage to ask. 

Roland fumed. "He comes here, eats our food infecting us! How do you expect me to act Aesa?!"
"Like a man." Aesa said as she stood facing off her husband. "I expect you to forget this foolish feud you carry bottled inside that large heart of yours. He's your own brother and you mock his intelligence?"
"He never knew me enough to love me, so how do you expect me to hold family ties in this?"
"Because we are all called to love, even our enemies. The Goddess expects us to."
Roland hated his wife at moments like this, he loved her with all of his heart yet he hated her stubbornness and her accuracy of finding Her in everything. "I'm tired, let's just go to bed. I'll send him on his way in the morning."
"After you help him?"
Roland said nothing.

Askah found the cot he was on roughly overturned. 
"Let's go boy, you return home today." 
Askah stared astonished into Roland's face. "But I came here on a mission."
"Your mission's failed, my wife isn't here to hear your sob story. So get up and get your things."
"I don't have any things." 
Roland took Askah by his arms and started to drag him to the entrance. "Then let's go."
Fear overtook Askah as he was yanked along. Was his brother intending to kill him? "Wait I have to ask something of you"
Roland grunted, throwing open the door and hurling Askah out upon the ledge. "Leave, go to your own kind to die as the Goddess decrees."
Askah rolled once before he sprang up, he could feel a force inside of him urging him to hurry. He ran to the door as Roland was closing on it and shoved his foot in the opening. "No I won't let you, please I need your help Roland!"
Roland snarled and pulled the door hard, he could hear Askah's cries as his foot began to break. Roland relented and opened the door a little expecting the foot to pull back but instead a hand grabbed the door. "Go away, or I'll shut the door with your hand and foot crushed inside."
"I don't care! Please the village needs you, mother and father are dying. Everyone is dying."
Roland snarled he tried all the harder of shutting the door. He had to make Askah stop talking. Bone crunched against the wood and stone of the doorway.
Askah screamed with pain but he put words into his screams so his breath wouldn't be wasted. "Brother, you must help us! We will all die, I'm sorry I've brought the plague with me but you were the only one I thought could save us. Mother and father are ill. The children of the village are ill. Please, help us." It was agony to have his foot being crushed, he had room for his hand to come out. He had tried pulling the door open with his own hands but he was no match for his brother's strength. 
"I will not help those that cast me out! They all deserve to die. Sweet Elara, may the Ghosts take them!"
Askah was ridged with pain, his eyes were closed so tight that he saw sparks of white like Andrisian golden candelabra igniting in his head. "Please, help those that love you!"
"Love me?!" 
Askah was relieved as the door flew open, he fell in the doorway shivering as he tried to take hold of his crushed foot. 
"Who ever showed me love? Was it my parents who at the first chance of survival on my own tossed me out the door laughing and telling me to crawl away fledgling? Or maybe it was those children who threw stones at me and called me a freak? Or perhaps the elders of the village decreeing me to be a curse of the GoDs and muttering how I should've been killed at birth? Tell me, oh stupid little brother, who has loved me?"
Askah looked up with tears of pain and sorrow in his eyes. "I have loved you."

"Sir, sir he's coming around." 
Askah shivered, he felt so much pain and cold. The world kept spinning in his mind, he had remembered his brother throwing him off the cliff but after that nothing but the sensation of falling, spinning wildly out of control lingered in his mind.
"Thank you." A familar voice said somewhere near Askah.
"Roland? Roland...where are you?" Askah could barely get the words out of his chattering teeth, he was freezing. He felt like he would die from the cold. He opened his eyes and tried turning his head to get his barings.
"Lie still little one." Roland sat upon the bed and placed a hand upon his forehead, it was like fire to Askah. Sweat and tears mingled around Roland's eyes as he tried to comfort his brother. "Forgive me, I've behaved shamefully."
Askah wanted Roland's hand to remain forever on his brow, it was the only thing warm. He was numbed with cold and now with sadness. "I've missed you terribly my brother. Why am I so cold?"
Another face came into Askah's vision, it was the wizened old Cleric in the village. The village? Askah didn't understand. What were they doing there? He took another look around the room. Yes, he was in the infirmary where all the sickness was being contained. Only those with the plague were to be there. Askah saw in the healer's eyes the affirmative to why he was here. 
"Aye Askah, the first symptom of the plague is extreme coldness. Your friend here has been helping me, I have the sickness as well and can no longer feel anything but the cold. We're all doomed without a cure."
Roland's hand removed from Askah's head. "I thought the Clerics were to bring comfort and healing."
"Aye my friend, but at this point I'm beyond comfort giving. We're all doomed, not even the casket maker can continue his work, for he too is in this very room near death's door."
Roland snarled, "Don't listen Askah, now that I've found my little brother, rather my little brother has found me, I won't let you die."
Askah smiled weakly. "I will do as the Goddess decrees." He said remembering Asia. "Ristah, tell us of the cure; there are Dragon Scales that can save us. I went to you, Roland, for help, but I suppose it's too late for us now. Find the scales for your family so you all can live." Askah had to pause several times to cough as he spoke.
Ristah, the Cleric, chuckled. "Aye the scales, but none of us can get them alone. Not even you young man." He said to Roland. "If only we could find some fearless Fighters in the land ." 
Roland still stood resolute. "Tell me where I can find this, I swear I shall get enough for everyone in the village."
Ristah had walked away to sit upon an empty bed. He chuckled again. "A week is all I give to the boy, you don't have that kind of time to kill a Dragon at the very stormy peak of Mount Ash."
Roland had gone to where the Cleric kept packs and his food. The ill people weren't hungry so he packed himself a great amount of stores. "I shall be back within a week. When I get the scale what needs to be done to it to cure people?"
"You merely must grind and boil it with the morning tea." Ristah said as he lay down pulling the covers over his body. "Then all must drink, if we can." 
Roland came and sat upon Askah's bed, he took his brother's hand. "I shall return as soon as I can."
Askah struggled and sat up, he pulled the covers around him like a robe and hopped upon his one good foot. "I'm coming too. You can't leave me behind to do nothing but watch the Hound of Hell snarl upon the foot of my bed." 
Roland ran to hold his brother up, "It's too dangerous and you're weak enough."
"I'm going."

Of Druids and Dragon Scales pt. 2 by RobertHood on 10 Jun 2009 : 00:41
Cont.



Roland sighed as he stepped out into the fridged air of late Bleeding Moon. He took off of his side a horn and wetted his lips before blowing upon it. The sick inside the building thought it to be the trumpet of the the Luck Fairy calling them all home.
Laughter came raining down from the air as another limbed man bound around Roland's head like a Bracken. "Aha brother of the Thorn, you call?"
"I'm on an urgent mission, Aries. I need you to come along because my sick younger limbless brother is coming too. He can't walk and he certainly can't Teleport."
"Ohh I didn't know you had a brother, oh brother of the Thorn! Does he he have roots as well?"
"No, he's normal."
"What kind of mission are we on?" The man was fleet as an Fire Elemental, yet as crazy as a Troll. For the first time since his first appearance he sprawled across the ground, his dark tentacles wriggling behind him awkwardly. 
"We're in search of some scales on the summit of Mount Ash. There is a plague in this town, I have been infected and now you too are also in danger. My wife and children may also have this cursed plague that threatens to take the life of my younger brother."
The wriggled appendages stopped floating, then twitched once. Twice, thrice before Aries said anything more. "Mount up on the beasts! We shall send this black plague back to the depths of Hell where it was spawned!" Aries sprung into the air, if he had a sword he would've drawn it and probably have lopped off his own elongated ear in his madness. "Nothing shall stop us! I am ready!"

If felt like they had been walking for ages. Roland turned once more to see Aries supporting his younger brother. He had refused, saying he had to lead the way and break through the ash.
The two wooden men had taken Askah, bundled and still shivering with the coldness of his sickness, across the valleys and hills to the foot of Mount Ash. Now they had started the real toils of their search. Being paralyzed, Askah could only go at a slow shambling pace. Several times he and Aries had fallen into the molten rocks together, Askah screaming and shivering with pain.
Roland wasn't going to stop, he had made a promise to himself to save Askah, no matter the cost. He was still set in his stubborn way of thinking when Aries called to him.
"Brother of the Thorn, hold a moment." 
Roland turned, Aries voice had sounded strange, rather like his teeth were chattering. It had been a day or two since they had started traveling together. Aries, however, was used to seering northern winds.
Aries and Askah were in the ash. Aries was hugging his shoulders, his leathery bark folded around him. "Brother...I'm sorry it's too cold." He said quietly trying to keep his teeth from chattering too much.
Roland panicked and felt Aries head, it was cold to the touch, he was burning with the fever. "Askah, how quickly did the sickness spread?"
"Sometimes a day or two, sometimes a week." Askah murmured.
Roland touched Aries on the shoulder. "Go back to the village while you still can, we will go on alone."
Aries struggled a little to laugh and stand to his feet but he couldn't. "I'm sorry."
"No need, we'll be back teleporting among the treetops again."
"Or with the Fairies." Aries said, his wild limbs quaking.

Askah could feel his brother's arm around his shoulders, helping him to his feet. He felt the strong shoulder under his supporting his weight. 
"If it is Elara's will." Roland said to Aries before urging his brother to take a step.
Askah moaned with pain, he wondered what had possessed him to come along. He was slowing his brother down and he knew it. He turned his head to see Aries slowly elevate to the air and be whisked away by his Air Elementals down the mountain side.
"I'm sorry brother."
Roland said nothing.
Askah hopped another step, then another. He wondered if his brother got tired as they continued to plug steadily along, always upwards. Sometimes they would stumbled and go down in the burnt grass, but then Roland would always help him up and they were off again. Askah wondered what his brother thought about at moments like those.

Later that evening as Roland sat near his brother's sleeping form he couldn't help but think. All that day he had been silent, brewing over what a horrid person he was. How he wished the GoDs would slay him and save his younger brother. He had brought a cripple, a cripple he had made, out into the wilderness to die of a plague. His brother should be strong, healthy, walking around on two good legs, and enjoying his life as a normal Human.
"I hate myself." He finally said aloud. It was all he said as his mind was ablaze with the thoughts of the day and the searing heat at his bedside. He then lay down, encirling his brother under his bark. He tried everything he could think of to stop his brother from shivering and freezing in his sleep. It was like the boy's warmth was gone. The doctor had said the next symptom was a ravenous fever that would eat the bones inside the flesh. It was toward the end that they warmed up to a point of delirium and then at the very end they suffered from both heat and cold. Sometimes they froze to death in their sleep, in a heated room. Or they died of a heat stroke, when they were out in the cool air. 
"I promise, you won't die. I promise." Roland vowed to his sleeping brother. "I haven't been there for you, but I shall be now." He said firmly, he had to believe he wouldn't lose his brother, but in his heart he feared and prayed.

"Roland?"
Roland woke up to see Askah had crawled out from under his bark. "We should be starting."
Askah nodded, he felt his brother's prickly palms once more help him to his feet. "Maybe you should leave me here and go on. You should be there and back before too long."
"I couldn't leave you alone. We'll do it together, as brothers. We'll be the hero's of the town!" Roland said as lightly as he could.
Askah smiled. "As brother's then. What do you think they'll award us?"
Roland smiled. "A hot Mug of Ale and a warm bed with Aesa and the two little ones near." 
"I'm up for the warm bed and the ale...if it tastes good that is. What does ale taste like?"
"Like the best mouth watering cold soup you can imagine." Roland said as they started again.

Askah felt so warm inside now. His brother was actually talking to him as if they had never been separated. He talked about the hunting in the upper atmosphere's and how to catch fish while gliding. Askah in return could talk about his schooling and some of the hunting he had done. "I'm not that good of a hunter anyway."
"You will be one day." Roland had said.
They then talked about girls. Askah felt a little embarressed when this topic came up, he could feel his cheeks growing bluer and bluer with ice chill as Roland asked if he liked anyone in the village. Roland then talked of Aesa, how he had met her. It sounded grand how he talked of his wife, it made Askah a little jealous that his brother was married and he had no one. 
"Even if you never become a great hunter remember this, because hunting is rather like finding a wife, you only need to have one you and one good shot through the heart to catch those pretty fishies." 

The next day Roland began to notice a change in his brother, he was warmer. In fact as he helped his brother up the mountainside he began to feel a firey warmth hitting him. Sweat ran down Askah's tightened face. "Do you feel well Askah?"
"It's so hot out." 
Roland shivered as a fiery blast hit them, his brother didn't even flinch. "Keep your clothing on, you will be glad of it." But later Roland could help but take pity on his brother and help him out of his fur coat. Even then his brother complained of the heat outside as the altitude rose and the winds increased.
It was then that Roland felt a real cold settle over him, he was chilled to the bone inside. His heart seemed to have stopped. He feared for his brother's life. All that was next was the delirium to set in, and they still hadn't reached the top of the mountain. They were high up, too high for Roland to glide. If he tried the Fire Elementals would carry him down in no time, they were too strong. It seemed a storm was brewing.

All the next day the sky was dark, they were nearing the crest of the mountain but Roland found it hard to keep on. He was shivering with cold, his teeth wouldn't stop chattering together, meanwhile Askah complained of the heat.
The two brother's almost argued with one another about the temperature. But both were too tired and they both didn't want to hurt the other so they endured. 
Roland nearly moaned for joy as the land leveled out in front of them. He could see a omunious opening in front of them. They struggled to get inside of it. There inside was a vast chamber that branched into a network of tunnels. In the chamber Roland was in awe at the variety of treasure that lay heaped in piles on the stone floor. Golden coins, daggers, orbs helmets and full black plate, layered with golden trim. Rings, charms and Robes of Magic were strewn and shredded as they lay across their rotting victims. Here was evidence of Dragon activity, and here was a chance to find some Dragon Scales!
Roland's mouth dropped open in bewilderment. But how were they to find the scales in an area so vast with heaps of magical and ceremonial garb scattered abroad?

"Hmm, what was that mother?"
Roland raised a brow and asked again. 
"Oh, yes. I got the scales for the brew. I picked them special, when's father coming home...it's soo hot in here."
Roland quickly sat his brother against base of a chest. He had to find the scales quickly. He ran along praying that the goddesses would guide him to the right thing. Snake Skins and Forest Draco scales littered seemingly ever chest. Roland started to take clusters from every chest. He carried them back and then wondered how he was to prepare the right Scale if he found it. 
Ristah's words came to him. "You must boil it with the morning tea."
"Well it's morning enough now." Roland said as his teeth chattered.
Askah had started to laugh and sing to himself.
Roland pruned himself and started a fire. He pulled out a couple of Silver tea leaves he had brought in his inventory and put them in a pot over his fire. He then took some some ice from the satchel (from his adventures in the Ice Dungeon a year earlier) and began to melt it, waiting for it to boil. 
While he waited he debated with himself over the mixed pile of creature remains. "This one, it looks like the right kind. Or maybe...this one, it looks thicker. Oh Goddess, which one is it?!"
Roland knelt and began to pull at his grassy hair as he pondered the question. "Mother of Life, help me. I need to save my brother, I need you to save him I can't do it on my own."
Roland closed his eyes and felt along the items, he trusted the goddess to guide his hand. Finally he stopped roving and clutched one as the pot began to boil. He put the item he had chosen in and threw in the tea leaves. "Let this be the right one." He prayed silently.
Askah seemed to be working up into a delirium he sat shaking and screaming from where he sat. He shouted strange words and odd sentences. Sometimes laughing and shivering as with cold, other times wiping at his brow as if he was hot. At any moment he could pass out and die. A Ghost of Askah would not do in this hellish Volcano.
The object took it's time to steepen with the tea. There was no rush to it, whether Askah lived or died was none of it's concern.



Roland startled awake when his forehead touched the hot pot of water. He sat up and wondered how long he had been sleeping. He couldn't have fallen asleep, his brother needed him! And what if the Dragons came back?!
It was then that he saw two strange men standing over Askah. They seemed to be discussing over him as he lay against treasure chest. They then turned almost instantly as Roland sat up to look at them. It was like they had eyes in the back of their head. In fact they had more than just eyes, they had the body of a horse.
Roland struggled to stand to his feet, he felt hot and dizzy, he still had the sickness and it had worsened. "Leave...him...alone." Was all he managed to pant as he spread his tentacled barbs to steady himself.
The men smiled at him. One was a light, while the other was dark. They both had the upper build of a man, but their lower quarters consisted of four legs, hooves and a coarse tail. A strong odor eminated from them and they seemed to talk as one. 

Of Druids and Dragon Scales pt. 3 by RobertHood on 10 Jun 2009 : 00:39
Cont.



Roland tried standing up straight, he was preparing himself to fight when both men spoke their voices blending with the voices of the faces on them. So what came out was an awesome sound of one tone diversed into two other tones ranging from the high voice of the lofty god to the low bellow of the Minotaur. "Peace be with you."
Roland trembled as they drew near, before he could move they surrounded him. Their dark eyes pierced him as the eyes of a Lion on its prey. Roland looked from one to the other. "Alright, kill me quickly if you must."
The darker haired being howled in laughter, "Look at me, Human." He said solemly after a moment.
Roland gazed into the man's eyes, they were ageless pools of wisdom and strength. He felt himself falling to his knees in silent reverence of the power in the being's eyes. 
The other laughed this time. "Do not worship us Man Roland. Your prayers shall be answered."
"We have treated your brother, he is now in deep sleep dreaming of the day you two will be united as brothers."
"Now we must see to you, for the sickness still rages inside your heart." 
"My heart?" Roland felt a fresh wave of dizziness wash over him as he kept looking back and forth between speakers. It was the darker being's turn to speak. 
"Indeed. Anger, rage, bitterness against thy brother, and envy have entered your hearts. They have entered the hearts of those in the town below us. Let not the Serpent enter your master's home."
"They keep you from the goddess and her love. They keep you from the Bride and her love. They keep you from the Spirit and His love. Let not the Serpent enter."
"But it's not my heart that's sick..."
"The sickness comes from the true disease inside of your heart. Will you let us help you? Will you turn toward our Master, Eshtol, and let him take away the bitterness?"
Roland looked to the next to speak the blonde, but the man said nothing. Dizziness washed over Roland bringing a fresh wave of heat. "I don't know, what have I done wrong? What did I do to be punished by our Sweet Mother so?"
Both men knelt, their manes folding into an entangled mass. "She is not angry with you. Do not say such things, do you not hear her weeping over your sickness?" They said together as one before falling dead silent.
The winds outside howled but on them carried the sound of sobbing. It sounded like on who's heart was breaking within him.
"I'm sorry, if I have done even more wrong."
"No small one." The blonde said putting a hand on Roland's shoulder. "The choice is up to you on whether you will continue to harvest bitter feelings in your chest or turn away from them. We will be near, the Goddess is the one you need to speak with." 
They both stood and walked off into the jewel-clad cavern. The were soon lost among its bosom.
Roland trembled all over, he wanted to scream as the fever came into his mind. He felt alone, he felt know everything was his fault. He couldn't explain the thoughts, they seemed to come at him from inside of him. "If you hadn't had hated your mother and father the holy Mother of life would be able to forgive you." 
Roland pulled at his tangled hair and screamed, he began to roll on the ground as he felt something crawling and squirming inside of him. "I don't want this! I don't want to die!" He screamed, hoping the two men would return. 
"Help me!" Tears ran down Rolands face now as he trashed around upon the ground, his whole world spinning as his anger and bitterness flew in front of his eyes. Attacking him like a swarm of corpse flies.
Roland managed to get up on his knees, he then threw his branches wide and began to flail, pulling himself off the ground. Was this the delerium that set in? Seeing strange men, then being attacked, was he still on the ground or in the air? Was he alive or dead? 
He looked more like a crazed caged Lion, he thrashed around and flew into nearly everything without feeling it. Finally he crashed into a stalactite and dropped to the ground, the adrenaline flowed around inside of him making his heart beat faster and faster as he listened for his attacker. He dared not get up, if it was his mind breaking then he should remain where he was.
As he lay, his heart pounding out of his chest, he thought on what the two men had said. He looked back upon the years, when he was younger he would stand on a high mountain and scream down curses upon the town. When he grew he would glide into the town at night and would cause mischief. But when he had met Aesa she had made him stop such childish acts. Not a day went by that he didn't think about some sort of havoc he could cause upon the town.
"Life-giver, I see my wrongs." He said clutching the ground as he felt a wave of dizziness and fever come upon him. "You and I both know them, it is my heart that is dying. I can't live like a wild animal anymore, thinking up new ways to cause pain upon my own family. Please, heal me of this sickness. Take away this anger and disease, only you can. I am yours...save me."
He closed his eyes, gasping as wave after wave of heat ran through his body. He wanted to scream again as more pain shot into him, he feared he would be fighting off more attackers when he lost conciousness.
"Man Roland."
Roland moaned, he knew those voices. They were calling to him across the winds from a place of pain. Roland didn't want to come to them, he wanted to stay where the man could heal him more.
"Man Roland, wake up." 
Roland opened one eye to see the smiling face of his tamed Wolf nearly snuffling his face with its large wet nose. 
"Man Roland, you must drink this. It will help to lessen the pain you are in." The beast bellowed. Then the two faces turned and it was the two beings looking down at him with kindly eyes. The darker being held a small glass in his hand, while the other laided a cooling cloth upon Roland's forehead.
Roland took the glass readily, he raised it to his lips but once the flavor hit his tongue he tried to spit out the liquid. 
Four hands were upon him, two supporting his neck and holding the glass to his lips. "The taste is bitter, like envy and hate. You must drink it though for we all must learn to take responsibility."
Roland gagged upon the liquid until the last drop was down his throat. He then sighed as they laid him back upon the grass. "The man was real, wasn't he?" He asked.
The two looked at one another then answered. "What man?"
"I had the strangest dream." Roland said, feeling at ease of telling them about how he had met this man upon a hill. They had talked about...now the image was fading but he could still remember the man. "It was real, wasn't it?"
"Yes Man Roland, it was real. Now rest, there is a great many things you will soon be doing." 
"Once you awaken for the second time you must make haste. You and your brother are needed in the village."
Roland nodded as sleep descended upon him. The last glimpse of the Beings he had was of them standing, a blazing white fire seemed to consume them and then...blackness and sleep.
Of Druids and Dragon Scales pt. 4 by RobertHood on 10 Jun 2009 : 00:39
Cont.



Askah opened his eyes and moaned with delight, he didn't want to wake up but he wasn't tired anymore. He rolled over to survey his surroundings and saw the remains of a fire, an inventory that looked packed, and his brother laid out upon the stone floor. His limbs were stretched out in sleep and ever so often one would twitch.
Askah couldn't contain his laughter, he felt so full of life and happy. Besides that, his brother looked like a Dog that twitches and barks in it's sleep. Askah sighed and laid back down against the chest of gold.. He had seen two men come to him in his dreams. They had given him something bitter to drink and had said things to him. He couldn't remember everything to well as he lay, his heart light within him. He had remember seeing Lions in his sleep though, he wondered why it had been when the men turned their heads Lions had jumped out of nowhere.
Certain details of his cure were hazy but he wasn't concerned as he relaxed. It was good to feel warm, not burning heat or freezing cold. Just the warmth of health. "Wouldn't it be great if everyone in the village could feel this way?" He said aloud.

Roland sighed, something was hitting him in the head. He looked up expecting the two Beings but he saw his brother holding a wet Silver Leaf, water dripped down onto his forehead. "That's very annoying, you do realize that don't you?" 
Askah tried hard to contain a smile as he nodded, his face turning red with the effort.
Roland roared as another water droplet hit him, he was up and had grabbed his brother, rubbing his grassy paw along the boys scalp fussing up his hair. "I say we shall have nice young Askah for lunch."
Askah was laughing as he tried pushing his brother away. He cried out, "Mercy mercy!"
The two brothers rolled and tumbled around in their play. Sometimes Roland would pull Askah into the air, or Askah would leap up and grab Roland by the ankles trying to drag his brother down. When they were both extremly tired and content they sat down to tell the other of what had happened to them.
"Do you think both men were from the goddess?"
"No doubt." Askah said, he knew a little more about Her than his older brother.
"They told me we are needed in the village...can you walk?"
Askah fell over laughing. "You still must be feeling ill, we've been running around this cavern like mad and now you ask if I can walk?" 
Roland started to chuckle. "We must remain serious, I'm sure we must. Don't make me throw you into that chest over there and lock you up young whipper snapper."
They both started laughing and teasing one another, acting silly for a moment before they sobered up. 
"What do you have in the satchel?" Askah asked pointing to the bundle.
"I don't know. I didn't put it there." 
They went over and looked inside to see it stuffed full of Black Dragon Scales. 
"We must go now, who knows how many lives have been lost while we slept and played. And who knows when the Dragons will return." Roland said becoming stern. He put the pack over his shoulders and then walked toward the entrance. "I can carry you, it will be uncomfortable but it won't be long. It's easier going down a mountain than up it."
Askah came and stood in front of his brother. "Let's go."
Roland scooped his brother up and they were off being hurried along by the mighty storm winds that howled and threatened to throw them upon the ground. 
Mount Ash was a mean mountain that never welcomed guests and always bid guests goodbye with the threat of death if they didn't hurry fast enough. What had taken them a day or two to climb, only took a couple of hours to descend. Both where cold but grateful that they were alive and well, they just hoped and prayed that they were not too late to save others.

Roland's wings shook and trembled as he finally set Askah down in front of the village Clerics. "Askah, go inside." He took the pack off his shoulders and took out some scales. "Use as many as you need, I shall return." 
"Wait Roland, where are you going?"
"I too have a family to save." He said quietly before taking off again on trembling limbs.
Askah paused for a moment to wish his brother good fortune in his heart before he opened the door. 
A scorching heat slammed into his face. The place wreaked of sickness and even death. Askah ran, for he didn't have to tend to the fire. It was blazing up out of the stove as he put a pot of water on it. It wasn't long before the scales had brewed with the tea and he was serving everyone that was still living. 
It frightened him when he went up to a bed to see some laying so still and white. He knew they were still alive, it was just the ones who lay so still and were a bluish sick color that were dead. But those not dead, so close to death, would they be healed in time? He couldn't think about that as he forced them all to drink the tea. Then he left the building armed with a small pot of hot tea. Maybe other's were sick and dying but couldn't come to the cleric's hovel in time.
He had gone to every house in the village, finding some and saving some. It was later on in the day as he rested against a buidling wondering if he was to bury the dead by himself that he heard the sound of leaves flickering in the wind.
"There he is!"
Askah looked up to see Roland laughing and landing nearby, with him were a dozen strong Druids. They all landed and looked at Askah as if he were a hero.
"Here I am." Askah said, a bit dazed and confused.
"So while I'm out saving my people, I see my brother laying around." Roland came over and pulled his brother in for a hug. "I'm sorry there are so many gone, we've come to help you bury them." 
As Askah pulled away he saw tears form in his brother's eyes. The playfulness that had been there moments ago was gone. "Brothers, let us bury the dead."
Askah was amazed at how quickly the work was soon done. The dead were laid to rest beneath the earth. Then black-clad women came to prepare food. Aesa was among them to lead in the preparations. Everyone was fed, including the helpers.
Askah found himself shoulder to branch-tip with a boy around his age. "What's your name?" 
"Gabriel. What's your's?"
"Askah, do you know my brother Roland?"
"Sure do. I'm glad that he has a younger brother." The boy said munching upon his Loaf of Bread.
"Why's that?" 
"I have someone to go hunting with my own size." The boy said laughing.
Roland saw his brother with Gabriel and smiled. "Looks like we'll have another young beast-tamer in our ranks." He said to Aesa.
"Correction darling, another young hunter. They will amaze you with their bow skills. Gabriel's bound to pester you to death to take the two of them out hunting now." 
"Boys," he grumbled"
"Men," Aesa snorted right back at him. "Have you found your parents yet?"
Roland looked away. "I'm not sure whether they're among the dead or the living, I haven't asked Askah yet."
Aesa rubbed his shoulder with her hand. "I will go with you to find out if you want me to."
Roland smiled and held her hand. "Thank you."
"Gabriel may I have a word with my brother?"
"Certainly." Gabriel stood and smiled at Askah before running off to finish his bread crumbs somwhere else.
"Askah, I must ask. Are mother and father...living?"
Askah paused to think for a moment then stood. "Follow me."
They walked toward the cemetery where the graves had been dug. They then turned and went into a small shrine, layered with golden-laced tombs. Inside Askah turned and gave a weak smile at Roland. "They're still alive, but I'm not sure if the cure will heal them or if they are ones too far gone."
Roland went forward to the entombment; he knew where it was. He was remembering. As Roland passed through the door, Askah reached in and closed it behind his brother. Roland was startled, but soon thought it may be for the best.
Outside the door Askah smiled at Aesia. "I thought it best they should meet alone."
Aesa smiled. "You're wise beyond your years Askah."