Fall of the Grashman tribe

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Fall of the Grashman tribe

Postby Malia » Wed Mar 30, 2011 4:05 am

The Flames erupted from yet another building as the Orcs ravaged the town. Villager after villager was killed without mercy. Most were women and children because the men had all fallen trying to defend the walls of the village. A futile attempt but one they knew that had to try. Screams here and there shattered the night air as another villager was found and put on the blade. The night went on but the village did not. Not a single villager was left alive man, woman, or child.
At daybreak, most of the fires were out but nothing was left. The orcs were gone all 20,000 of them had marched on hardly slowed by the village of only a few hundred. The village defenders had taken a few with them for sure, but when dealing with so many it wasn’t even enough to dent the hoard.
A small light seemed to appear in the center of the village about 4 feet off the ground. The light grew and became a thin black line just suspended from air. A second later it widened and became almost a door in appearance about two feet tall and bout four feet long. A small framed girl no more then 14 stumbled out of the dimensional pocket and fell face first into the blood soaked ground. She was covered with colorful tattoos from head to foot and wearing nothing. tears streaming from her face at the loss of the entire village. Her parents, friends, elders had all sacrificed so that she could live. All she could do was sob.
The sun had rose to almost midday before she could even bare to stand and look around. She new nothing but pain and loss would be waiting for her if she tried to look for any survivors so she stumbled out of town grabbing a few piece of clothing to cover up with. She had to warn others of what was to come.

....... 1 day earlier....

A scout sat calmly in the circle of elders telling of the hoard of orcs coming. The size the hoard was far beyond what the scout had ever seen before. "Are you sure, at least ten thousand?" asked Poenalt the village Chief. "Ten thousand was all that i could see and there was many more behind that" the scout responded. "How far away, how much time do we have?" asked another elder. The scout sighed and replied "not much, 1 day at most before the first of them reach our walls". The scout continued "The last 3 villages have been burned to the ground and nothing was left no survivors that I could find." "Can you go on to the next village and warn them? We don’t have time to move everyone in the village but one person must survive to warn of the hoard." "Aye." replied the scout, "I could, but the size of the hoard, there is nothing i could tell them that would save them either."
The council of elders continued to discuss what might be the end of the village that had stood for over 300 years and 15 generations. "Is there any magic that we have that might hide the village?" asked Soplato the youngest of the elders. "I have enough magic to hide a chest sized box for about twenty-four hours." replied Poenalt. "I couldn’t hide anything large for nearly long enough, and even then twenty-four hours may not be enough." the chief explained. "So we are lost, all of it, is lost" another elder spoke.
At that moment a young girl came into the tent, about 4 foot tall, long brown hair, pulled back in a pair of ponytails. Her skin an olive complexion tanned by the mountain sun without so much as a flaw on her skin. Her round almond eyes showed life and energy beyond her small body and young age. She climbed up on Poenalt's lap and sat there in contentment as if that was her favorite place to be. Poenalt couldn’t help but smile at his daughter. Ceda was so young and full of life and so very much like him in his younger years. A shame that in less then twenty-four hours it would all come to an end, or maybe not.
"What if we could take all us, our memories and experiences, and preserve them. We may not continue but our memories can." "How is that possible, without a host we cannot preserve anything, and you said you can only hide something the size of a chest." At that moment the chief looked at Ceda again and smiled, he could save his daughter and memories of the village at the same time. "Yes I could preserve something the size of chest." replied the chief.
Over the next several hours, the elders prepared Ceda for what would be the most painful experience of her life but one of the most necessary to preserve the way and life of the village. They laid her down on the table and shaved her head. The village priests prayed over here and prepared her body to receive the life force. The village magi stood behind them weaving magic that would imbue each persons memories and skills and all other forms of tradition into Ceda. All the while, She lay there knowing she must do this, her eyes started to water up. Everyone she knows would be gone soon.
One by one the villagers came into the tent. The magi and priests would chant together and a piece of soul from each village would arc out of the body of the villager and fly over Ceda and land and form some form of embodied picture on her skin. The picture would writhe and move and fully become whatever symbolized that family tree and then become still. There was a azure bear with his paw on the skull of a goblin representing the fight over 100 years ago in which the tribe used the forest animals to fight off a small tribe of goblins. A golden eagle that seemed to move periodically that represented the first ever magi of the village more then 200 years ago that successfully shifted into the form of an eagle. Another picture of several figures sitting around a fire, representing the talks of just a few hours ago.
After every villager had come, every man woman and even child had come, the memories were secured into the artwork that now covered her entire body, including her head. Each priest imbued his or her power into Ceda so that the magic would carry on through her. Tears were steaming down her face by this point as the pain was intense. But she lay there, knowing this had to be done to secure the village history. The magi then came up each imbuing them with their art or power, knowing that it would only come to fruition if she was properly trained. After all the magi were done her father the chief stood and placed both hands on her head. He made a slight chant and he body stiffened as every generation of chief was passed on to her and all the tattoos began to writhe again as he imbued his power into her. Afterwards she lay perfectly still. Her chest barely moving up and down that was the only sign of life she had, she hardly blinked or moved as the power overwhelmed her young mind.
By now it was morning and the villagers had very little time before the orcs were there. Ceda still hadn’t responded but was breathing strong. The men took up positions along the wall with their bows. The priest and magi took up weapons as well on the wall, their magic spent, they had done all they could do. The chief carried his daughter to the center of the village and laid her down, with a small gesture and a word of power a small two foot by four foot pocket opened out of nowhere and glowed brightly. He lay Ceda inside and kissed his daughter goodbye for the last time, knowing that when she awoke their village and all inside would be gone. The pocket snapped shut and disappeared the power spent and the chief picked up his mighty two-handed sword and made his way to the gate ready to strike down anyone who was in his way.

Ceda knew the orcs were heading east, so she would head south towards Luskan. The orcs wouldn’t cross the river and Luskan would have ample defense to hold off a hoard until Neverwinter or Waterdeep could send reinforcements. Every step she seemed to grow stronger knowing that the only way her villages' sacrifice would pay off is if she survived. So she walked on, all day, only slowing to rest at night. The thought of revenge gave her strength as well, and she could feel the power inside her ready to explode but knew nothing of how to call it forward.
On the third night as she lay there sleeping under the night sky a large orc scout had tracked her down and had waited till night. It stalked around the camp and slowly crept in on the young child who was only sleeping. When it came around the next tree expecting to find just a single child it saw 3 children all sleeping under the tree. They all looked identical with the same tattoos only the one on her arm, a small picture of two figures standing facing, seemed to be almost glowing in the darkness of night. He unsheathed his dagger and crept up, what did it matter if its was 1 or 3 children, he would slay them all and take back a finger of each for trophy.
He stalked up to the middle child and stabbed downward into the child. But the child seemed to blink and disappear as if it was never there, and the other two children awoke with a start. They seemed to move in unison as they both rolled away and stood up. The orc was totally off balance his stab going into thin air and his dagger stuck in the roots of the tree that he had stabbed into instead. He pried his dagger out and stood to face both children. Suddenly another tattoo burst into color on her forehead, a picture of a snakelike tendril coiled up reading to strike, glowed a brilliant red. Ceda had no idea what had happen she woke to see the orc with his dagger in the roots and what seemed to be a mirror image of her following her moves. She rolled to the side and stood up and a searing pain shot from her forehead and she fell backwards and passed out. The orc saw the red tattoo glowing and then both children fell backwards unmoving. He tried to take a step forward but a black shadow like tendril burst from the ground and coiled around him, squeezing him until he could breathe no more. His eyes bulged from lack of oxygen and then went dull as the life was squeezed out of him. The tendril uncoiled and faded into a mist and was gone, but the orc remained laying on the ground dead.
Ceda awoke with a horrible headache and thought it had all been a dream until she sat up and realized the orc from her dream last night was laying on the ground dead. How could it be, what had happen she thought. what was going on. The tattoos from last night were bright in color again but not glowing like last night and all seemed to be still. Somehow last night she had released some power but wasn’t able to control it and had passed out. Thankfully the magic itself understood and was able to protect her. She took the dagger from the dead orc and a few coins and continued the trek to the Mirar River. She must make it.
She traveled through the forest exhausted after almost a week of walking. She just wished someone would have left her a horse. At that instant one of the tattoos around her wrist started to writhe under her skin. A picture depicting a single rider on an almost phantom like horse in a brilliant white and yellow coloring. The horse seemed to move almost at a gallop without his hooves hitting the ground. She felt a slight tingling and force that seemed to emanate from her made her stumble back. The phantom horse from her wrist seemed to leap off her wrist and grow until a full size horse at least seventeen hands tall. The horse bowed its head with an almost understanding that he was here for her. She couldn’t believe it. She had brought forth this horse just by thinking about it.
She looked over the horse, it wasn’t really a horse more like a ghost of a horse. She could see through it, but she could touch it and knew it would support her weight. She mounted the horse and could feel his thoughts in her own mind. All she had to do was think where she wanted to go and the horse understood and off they went. The horse ran on and on not slowing at all until she got to the river. It was almost night by the time she reached the river. She dismounted the horse and went to look for the best way to cross the river. It was spring and the river was high. The horse neighed one time then almost faded to nothing and disappeared. She looked down to her wrist and the tattoo was still there, but when she tried to think about it again nothing happened. She tried again, closing her eyes trying to focus on the horse, nothing, no glow, no movement, nothing. Great, how was she going to get across now?
The river was moving too fast with all the spring melting and was way too high to try to swim across. There was no ferry, no boats, not for miles she knew. She looked across the river and tried to think of a way to get across to the other bank. She felt something tingling on her back it was the same feeling she got when the horse came to life, what now she thought. She looked out across the river again and this time she was staring at the side she had just been on. She had somehow just teleported across the river and was on the south banks looking north. She looked down at her horse tattoo again and tried to bring it forth just for company but again nothing. She was tired and didn’t understand so she lay down under the night sky and closed her eyes.
Dreams came that night, dreams of a time long ago where what must have been her relatives long ago came to her. She dreamed of the family finding the small hill her village was on and building the first hut along the creek. The first hut that would later become the village she had known and loved. More dreams followed that night, sad dreams of one of the children drowning in the creek at a very young age. Grief washed over her dreams. Later she dreamed of another time, and she witnessed the birth of yet another child boy child and joy washed over her.
She awoke the next morning not knowing what to think of the dreams but knew she would never forget the feeling of grief, of the feeling of joy that she had dreamed, they were real and she knew it. She looked down at the tattoo of the horse again and said aloud "I wish I knew how you worked, this would be so much faster if I could just ride you again." The Yellow and white tattoo seemed to come to life and glow again. The horse stepped off her wrist and again became the ghostly horse she had ridden the day before. He bowed his head again and was ready to take her wherever she wanted to go. She wasn’t about to look this gift horse in the mouth, she climbed on and willed the horse south on to Luskan Outpost.
When she finally arrived at the outpost she was afraid how someone might look at her ghostly horse so she dismounted and tried to will him back into her wrist. The horse seemed to get thinner and thinner until it was just mist and blew away in the mountain breeze. She looked down and the tattoo was there and didn’t move. She continued the short walk to Luskan outpost where she hoped to find help.

Ceda awoke from her dream. "Wow" she thought how many years ago had that been, she was fourteen then and she was nearly into her twentieth winter here in Waterdeep. So much time had passed, since she had made it out of the north, the only survivor of the onslaught of orcs. Since then she had learned to use the power the elders had given her and she was quite gifted. Then again the power of fifteen generations of chiefs blood ran through her veins, as well as the power of ten or more generations of village magi. She climbed out of bed threw on her traveling robe, and grabbed her staff and headed downstairs to the inn. She waved a warm hello to the innkeeper, started to make a gesture, and the innkeeper gave her one of his scolding looks again. She laughed, nodded and stepped outside, she knew how he hated magic and any use of it. She just wished he would understand it. There is nothing to be frightened of. She made a slight gesture a single tattoo on her leg glowed and she disappeared into nothingness and reappeared inside of a town far to the south called Vipers Tongue.
She walked out of the outpost and down a small dirt path, summoning forth the tattoo of two men facing each other. All at once several images appeared all appearing to be Ceda and mimicking her actions. Gripping the staff, which appeared to be made from living shadow, she walked on ready to face whatever adventures await her, knowing that her village lives on through her each and every day and will never be forgotten.
Dugmaren mutters in a surly voice 'Got any new strategy or going to continue with the "throw bodies at them til they get bored"? '

Dranth group-says 'i started drinkin when i found out galzar would be here'

Nerox says 'careful she goes from 0 to bitch in .00000001 seconds'

Mugo ASSOC:: 'ah got it on my gaytimer now :P'

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