BK
01
CH
03
SC
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The Doors Beyond
Findings and Revelations

…continues from Book #01, Chapter #03, Scene #05

Synopsis

The 14th Day of Ches in the Year of the Sudden Journey
Khalin and Tradden have returned from the Tower of the Mists with more questions that answers after battling flying stirges, giant spiders, and a curious beast, a rust monster. They have found a hidden forge in the cellars of the Tower, one harnessing an earth fire. But what manner of man or beast could use such a heat?

They also found many pieces of smithy work, untouched by the rust monster, and have left them all, including the strangest — some strange chain mail — with the smith Caldring as they head to the Council to report their finds.

For a chapter summary please see Chapter #03 Summary.

Cast List

Celestia Gaia

2nd Level Female Elven Cleric of Melora

Khalin Grundokri

3rd Level Male Dwarven Marshal (Warlord)

Kireth Majere

2nd Level Male Half-Elven Arcanist (Wizard)

Tradden Aversward

3rd Level Male Human Weaponmaster (Fighter)

Zero Uhlit

2nd Level Male Human Scoundrel (Rogue)

Scene Length

This scene started on Tueday 11th January 2011 and completed on Wednesday 12th January 2011.

JAN
03

Mechanics
Google Wave

GW

This scene was originally written within Google Wave. The scene has not yet been transcribed into the new web format.

The original Wave is now lost with the demise of Google Wave, but the PDF extract of that original scene is provided.

Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

The Council were waiting for the group, sat in the main hall behind a large desk bereft of adornment. Chairs had already been placed out for the group and Valino and a dwarf in dull plate mail stood to one side of the room, with Beltak the scribe sat in the far corner behind a small desk, parchment and quill at the ready.

Tymander was sat in the middle of the Council trio, with His Radiant Servant, Tremak on his right, and Barghest on his left. ‘Please, be seated,’ offered Tymander, smiling at the group. ‘Can I offer any of you refreshments?’

The party slowly sat down, although none of them took Tymander up on his offer.

‘It looks as though you have had a most, uhm, interesting tenday since you arrived on our shores, wet, bedraggled, and within inches of your lives. Just what hardy adventurers are made, of, eh?" said Tymander openly.

‘You have helped us find two of our sons, repelled a goblin and kobold force, brought our smith back safely from a folly of an expedition, and now, if rumours are to believed, found hidden chambers that even our own well-trained guard could not find,’ the merchant continued, drawing a scowl from Valino.

‘You are to be congratulated. These are just the sort of heroics that we hoped adventurers would bring to these lands. Before long, we may be able to stretch our horizons beyond our small settlement and really strike out into the wilderness.’

Tymander continued smiling, and even Barghest looked pleased. Tremak, however, remained impassive throughout.

‘Now, to business,’ Tymander continued. ‘I believe you have found many items and discoveries of importance. Discoveries that may indeed tell us much more about our lands.’ He looked from each adventurer to the next, with a hopeful look, expecting someone to speak up and tell their story.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

Tradden took the lead and seized the reins to explain their adventures describing in detail their visit to the Isle and their finds in the Tower cellar. He kept some detail to himself, but perhaps revealed more than Kireth would have liked. The mage’s exterior remained impassive, but his teeth lost a few layers of enamel as they ground away.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

‘We will send a group to investigate this cellar, or forge, now that you believe it’s safe,’ said Barghest, speaking up for the first time. ‘We’ll clean it up a bit and see if we can determine what went on there. I’m sure Caldring would be most interested to…’

At that point the door behind the party burst open, with an apologetic guard trying desperately to pull Caldring back out of the room. ‘She wouldn’t listen, sir!’ implored the guard to Valino. ‘I told her it were private, like, but she kept on coming through.’

‘Why the interruption, my lady smith?’ quizzed Tymander as Barghest nodded for the guard to leave her, lest he get injured in the process of holding on to her.

Caldring shrugged off the guard and walked firmly up to the table, depositing the chain mail from the forge on the desk, almost reverently. ‘This!’ she uttered. ‘I think I know where it has come from!’ She seemed both exhilarated and agitated, drawing deep breaths and fidgeting.

‘Would you care to expand?’ asked Barghest.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

‘The links are exceptionally fine, do you see, and the metal is an alloy that I have yet to fully fathom, but would require great heat to combine. It might be the earth fire forge that helps in this instance — the heat would allow the molten metals to more fully‘’

‘Yes, yes, yes,’ interrupted Barghest. ‘We’re not here for a metallurgy lesson. What of the origin of the mail?’

She blushed somewhat, not sure whether to continue. After a moment she spoke, but quietly. ‘It’s from the Feywild,’ she said, almost apologetically.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

‘The Feywild!’ blurted Tremak, his demeanour changing for the first time. ‘That is but a fairy tale.’ He laughed heartily, and looked over to Tymander and Barghest.

Tymander ignored his comrade’s mirth and asked Caldring to continue, ‘Go on, m’lady.’

‘Amongst the elves we believe there is another plane of existence, one that mirrors this one but is more verdant and wild. One that can be crossed to at certain points from this world.’ Her eyes glassed over slightly as she continued, reciting as if from childhood memories of stories.

‘Towering forests sprawl for a thousand leagues. Perfect amber prairies roll between pristine mountain peaks soaring into the flawless clouds. Emerald, turquoise, and jade green seas crash along endless beaches. The skies are a perfect blue, not seen in the mortal world — until storms come, coal-dark thunderheads boiling with fierce winds and torrential rains. In this world, arcane power thrums through every tree and rock. All existence is magical. Our elven cousins live there, the Eladrin, and they perform great works or art from architecture, to music, to smithcraft.

‘My head cannot explain the smithcraft that has gone into this mail, but ever since I have touched it my heart has known the answer, it has been constructed by Eladrin hands.’

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

There was silence for a moment and Caldring just stood in front of the Council, her chest rising and falling to her deep breaths, her cheeks reddened by her embarrasment.

‘Nonsense!’ demanded Tremak, standing up behind the desk. ‘Have we been to this “Feywild”, smith? Have we seen these “Eladrin” on our shores? It is absurd. Pelor would have shone a light to guide our way to these lands should they exist, rather than allowing us to overgrow our Islands. I say it cannot be so!’

Silence rang out once more. Tradden, clearly fuming at the sudden outburst at the smith, started to stand, but a firm hand on each shoulder from Kireth and Khalin stopped him in his tracks.

‘Perhaps you are right,’ Caldring eventually replied, meekly. ‘I’m not sure why I interrupted you — it seemed to be most important at the time. Please, I beg your forgiveness.’

‘Hmpf!’ snorted Tremak, and sat down once again in his chair. Caldring slowly walked towards the exit.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

‘She’s right,’ interjected Kireth. ‘Or if not, she’s close.’

Tremak’s eyes burned as he looked directly at Kireth. ‘You dare to contradict me?’ he spat at the wizard, malice in his voice.

[Tremak Intimidate Check: 1d20+6: 21 vs Kireth’s Will (13)] - success!

Kireth was taken aback for a moment — he had not expected such ferocity from the priest. It took a few moments to compose himself.

[Kireth Diplomacy Check: 1d20+8: 22] - success!

‘Quite the contrary, His Radiant Servant,’ bluffed the wizard, with a flourished bow to Tremak. ‘Perhaps it is Pelor Himself that has shown us the signs.’

He was thinking on his feet, now, trying to calm the priest and yet get to his point. ‘Did we not find the cellars in the Tower lit by strange lights — ones we could not explain? If the room had been dark, perhaps Tradden and Khalin would not have survived the attack by the creature below? Is that not Pelor’s hand? Within the mausoleum, Pelor also played His part. His statues allowed us access to the chambers below to drive out the evil therein. Evil indeed that may have come from our own shores!’

This last point drew a gasp from Barghest, and a quizzical look from Tymander. It also appeared to have calmed down the priest.

‘The elf we found in the ritual room of that foul place,’ Kireth continued, altering his language to better suit the Council, ‘spoke excellent Common, and indeed his spellbooks contained rituals and devices that were known to me.’

‘I would suggest that there very well may be a Fe wild, or similar plane of existence, and that it has been, or is, in use. Judging by the actions of the elf in the mausoleum, I would say that its use is not for good.’

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

Kireth had chosen his words well, the Council conferred quietly, and he’d managed to get his point across without revealing his translations of the books he had covertly read.

After a long couple of minutes, the Council nodded between themselves, and Tymander turned back to the group.

‘Although we are still skeptical, your argument, and Caldring’s views, hold some sway with us, due to your honesty and help towards this town. We must use all we can from the Tower to see if we can corroborate your theory — Barghest’s men will bring back what they can for further study under the supervision of His Radiant Servant.

‘If, and I say if, your theory is right then we must plan carefully how we defend this town. Goblin, and now Kobold, forces seem to be on the uprise, and we cannot know for sure what is behind them.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

‘Perhaps you could help us once more in this regard. We will investigate the Tower fully and share anything we find with you. We will give you free board and lodging at the inn. However, we would ask one small favour in return — please investigate where these Goblins and Kobolds are coming from. We cannot afford for their numbers to grow and we cannot depend on the protective stones of this town for ever.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

‘There is a Goblin cave to the south of here, in the cliffs near a waterfall. Gilmorril has staked it out before. I would ask him to join you, but he is away to the east scouting the environs. Rindall here,’ Tymander motioned to the dwarf in dull plate mail, who smiled in anticipation of joining the group, ‘was with Gilmorril, but came back to report on his findings.’

‘If you could ascertain the size of their force from this den it would be of great help to the town. Removing them would be even better.’

Tymander started to continue, but Tremak interrupted. ‘It would greatly please the Council if you would allow Beltak to accompany you.’

The merchant’s jaw dropped somewhat, but he recovered quickly, and just glowered at the priest. Beltak simply dropped his quill in astonishment, fear, and excitement. Rindall, the dwarf, scowled and looked across at Tymander.

‘He is most skilled in recording and transcribing events and with Pelor’s guidance may also be of help to you in the field. I will personally assure he will not be a burden upon you.’

Tremak appeared to be very pleased with himself.

Tymander, now suitably recovered, smiled once more. ‘Yes, well, that’s settled then, isn’t it. What say you, then? Will you assist us once more?’

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

Zero sighed. Sadly. he was getting used to being pushed or dragged into perilous situations. These days he was inclined to just jump in and get it over with.

‘Beats staying here and watching the cows chew grass, I suppose,’ he said.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

Khalin clapped a hand on the rogue’s shoulder. ‘It’ll be good to have you back in the fray, my friend!’ the dwarf grinned.

The warlord then turned to face the council. ‘Forgive me, but wouldn’t a warrior,’ Khalin nodded in the direction of his countryman, Rindall, ‘rather than a scribe, be a better choice for a potentially perilous trip to a nest of goblins and kobolds?’ He shrugged, then added quickly, ‘No offence,’ and smiled politely at Beltak.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

As Khalin studied the Council waiting for an answer he could see Rindall nodding his head in agreement — it was obvious that the dwarf wanted to accompany the party. Tymander was about to speak, but Tremak cut him off before he could even begin.

‘Beltak is a fine student of martial practices, and is not out of place in such situations,’ the priest replied curtly. ‘I am sure he will be an asset to your, uhm, group. Do not underestimate the assistance that a devout follower of Pelor can provide.’

Barghest began to roll his eyes. Tymander sat motionless and seethed in silence.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

Tradden stepped forward, seeking the eye of Kireth and Celestia as he did so. He caught a nearly imperceptable shrug from the mage, which was as good as it was going to get he reckoned.

‘I think I can speak for us all when I say we will pay this cave a visit. Only a few months ago I had never imagined real goblins, and yet now I find I have more than one score to settle with the greenskins, and I dare say I am not the only one…’

‘Too right, lad!’ chipped in Khalin, rubbing his forehead as if remembering the pain inflicted by a sparking stick wielding by one such goblin during the ambush a few days previously.

‘Excellent, excellent — you leave in the morning!’ said Tremak, standing up. The meeting was clearly over.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

Once he had filed out of the hall with all the others, Tradden immediately looked to catch up with Caldring.

Predictably he found her already back at her forge, furiously beating away at something or other, her face otherwise impassive. The young fighter cleared his throat nervously.

‘Erm… Caldring? I don’t know too much about magic, or other planes of existence, but I do believe this Feywild exists if you say it does. I know that doesn’t probably hardly mean much…’

The smith stopped hammering for one moment, regarding the man emotionlessly, as if he might be mocking her. However, she saw nothing but the truth in his eyes. The hammering resumed.

Realising that he was already losing his way, Tradden looked to revert to a line of conversation that he knew would engage her a bit more — her work.

‘So,’ he began, rounding one of the tables at the front of her workshop whilst running his finger over the clearly dull blade of a guard’s halberd that was clamped in place, ‘do you think there is anything that can be done with Khalin’s armour or our weapons… ow!’ He sucked his finger, which now bled furiously.

The smith never looked up from her work as she replied. ‘I am aware of a technique that will restore any rust damage — leave your sword and ask the dwarf to bring any affected items to me this night, and they will be ready for collection in the morn.’ She nodded to a pile of detritus in the corner, which Tradden realised was his companion’s armour. ‘The armour is beyond anyone’s skills. However,’ she held up what she was working on with a pair of long metal tongs, ‘I am currently working on modifying a set of scale from one of the guards — that will be an adequate replacement, although it will not have the same, fine dwarven designs on it as before.’

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

‘Um, alright, thank you. Next, that Feywild armour — is that something we could, or should use? I realise it might be special, but I have to ask, especially if it can help us against this cave full of goblins.’

‘Essentially the answer is no — for it is not a finished piece and would not serve you well at the moment. It will be my next task, however — I am humbled to be able to work on it. My fervent hope is that I will be able to deduce not only the correct techniques from the books you brought me, but also that I will be able to find a way to actually complete it. It is… an astonishing item.’

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

‘Alright, is there anything that you can do with those bits of leather, or are they useless?’ Tradden looked sheepish, kicking at a dustball or something on the floor. ‘I know you work in metal, but, well, you seem really skilled with arms and armour, so, I thought, maybe, you might, erm…‘

The smith’s eyes were drawn to the sack of leather bits that Tradden had brought. ‘As you feared, manling, I have already surmised that they are of no particular value, although they will certainly be used for the benefit of the town in general. We can always use such materials.

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

‘Oh.’ Tradden looked crestfallen — he had really hoped she might be able to do something amazing with them. Not to worry.

All that now taken care of, Tradden took a step closer to the smith. ‘Caldring… I…’ he began. And then bottled it. ‘I… thought I should ask you whether there is anything else you could tell me about the Feywild that might help the group? We don’t know whether we might come up against something that might be using things like that chaimail for their own ends.’

Calding sighed. ‘I regret, only that which I spoke of in the Town Hall. Remember Tradden, this is widely regarded as a myth by the many generations that have handed the story down. Some of us beleive it is more than that, but there is little information out there, and my focus has always been on metals and my work.’

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Storyline
Blackengorge Town Hall

‘Right, well, I guess, that is, um, I will see you later,’ said the young fighter, turning towards the door.

‘Tradden?’ called Caldring.

‘Yes?’ came the reply as he turned back at the door.

‘Thank you for the books, Tradden… I, er… thank you for the books,’ she finished, now sheepish herself, unaccustomed to speaking this way, especially to those in the race of men.

Suddenly Tradden was very much cheered. ‘My pleasure, my fair lady!’ he finished with a flourishing bow as he exited the workshop. The effect would have been much more impressive had he not clipped his head on the doorframe.

What do you do about him?’ Caldring whispered to herself as she watched him walk back towards the inn. This time, it was her who betrayed herself by blushing. Glad there was no-one around to see it, she went back to her forge — there was work to do!

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Scene
Completed

End

[…continued in Book #01, Chapter #04, Scene #01…]