Category Archives: Cazic-Thule

Child of Innoruuk

You say, ‘Hail Zyrria I`Vanres’

Zyrria I`Vanres narrows her eyes as she briefly but carefully studies the Wolf Elemental before her. A look of irritation crosses her features as she exhales slowly in a faint growl. ‘Yes? State your business, Kaylorn . One such as I has not the time for idle and pointless conversation. There are much more [meaningful tasks] to which of my esteemed position and power of skills must attend.’

You say, ‘What about meaningful tasks’

Zyrria I`Vanres raises her brow sharply, her beautiful features twisting in disgust and surprise. ‘Are you to say that you do not recognize who and what I am? I am Zyrria I`Vanres of the Ebon Mask, sent here by my master, Tani N`Mar. Within Neriak, I am second to only him in rank and power, although I chose not to dabble in the political affairs that have abound in our city, thus why I am not widely recognized. My place lies elsewhere – in the shadows. I am a rogue, after all; a keeper of secrets and a bargainer with chance. Despite this location, tainted with the disgusting stench of the Fier`Dal, Tani has made quite an intelligent decision in sending me here to [observe]. It is most pleasing to have one recognize my talents and put them to an important use.’

You say, ‘What about observe’

Zyrria I`Vanres says ‘The forest, not to dodge the most abase of answers. Much of [great interest] to the Ebon Mask has occurred here in these past days. In fact, so interesting that I believe I might be so lucky as to gain council with the [Child of Innoruuk] regarding my reports here.

You say, ‘what about great interest’

Zyrria I`Vanres says ‘Not too long ago, the powers of The Faceless touched these lands. In his wake, he left behind some… things of interest. Alterations to the frail nature of this area, if you will. All of which seems rather trivial for a divine power of his stature and following, but amusing none the less. What has been done to the [precious maiden unicorn] is by far the most pleasing news I have had in many years.

You say, ‘what about precious maiden unicorn’

Zyrria I`Vanres smiles wickedly as her eyes light with a sadistic amusement. Equestrielle, a creature that was said to be closest to Tunare in its creation and existence. A being that represents purity, faith, honor, and life. No more does she show such things, as she is now a being of Cazic-Thule’s will. How marvelous, is it not? There are some I know who find it most tragic. A forest filled with sobbing fair elves! Hahaha! And to think, this greatest wonder came from the hand of Firiona Vie herself! It is a pity that one cannot obtain the horn as the champion carries it with her, but I believe I could make do without. Bring me two hides of a blighted mare and two enchanted platinum bars. They may not be Equestrielle herself, but they are steeds of The Faceless’s creation.

When you turn in the two blighted mare hides + 2 bars of enchanted plat you get a pack that has 30% weight reduction and holds medium items. Here is the text that follows…

Zyrria I`Vanres says ‘Excellent… oh, wait, damn. I can’t use these. The properties I was searching for seemed to have vanished in the death of the creature, although they are not entirely useless. I cannot let you go without reward, it would be a foolish loss of investment. Here, at least these hides should be of some use to someone. It is truly a pity that I cannot obtain Equestrielle’s horn. What glorious perversions we could create in furthering its corruption and pushing Tunare farther away from these lands/ Unfortunately for us, this is Cazic-Thule’s territory, and so [his minions] have come to lay claim to such spectacular finds.

Your faction standing with EbonMask got better.
Your faction standing with GuardsofQeynos got worse.
Your faction standing with WolvesoftheNorth got worse.
Your faction standing with GuardiansoftheVale gotworse.
Your faction standing with CarsonMcCabe got
You gain experience!!

You say, ‘what aboout his minions’

Zyrria I`Vanres says ‘There is one called Ytharisth Nerishar, an Iksar and supposed officer of the Cult of the Arisen. I have made attempts several times to make peace with him and bargain for researching territory, but he seems adamant about keeping all of this for himself and his people. Perhaps… no, no I would be asking too much of one as yourself, and although you have proven yourself worthy of being my loyal dog, I do not think you are quite the type to perform any acts of diplomacy.



You say, ‘Hail Talisyn Stormwing’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘Greetings, _____. You must forgive my rather [inhospitable mood] this day, if of course it comes forth to you in what speech we have.’

You say, ‘What about your inhospitable mood?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘ I am merely… troubled by the conditions of my change in stations. I once guarded Kelethin from the vile Crushbone Orcs, but it seems a new terror has arisen within our forests. It is the duty of a ranger, and I do not complain in the least, but the [mutilation and corruption] that slithers through the forest still brings a pain of anger to my heart.

You say, ‘What about the mutilation and corruption?’

Talisyn Stormwing furrows his troubled brow in confusion and surprise. ‘You need ask such a question and receive answers in the form of words to understand what it is that surrounds you, Danian? Have you neither heard nor seen the vile creatures that inhabit the putrid lands of Mistmoore to the south? Or have you not seen the creatures forged from the very shadows that lie not to far from our homelands? The Teir`Dal beasts that have made camp not too far from the entrance of Mistmoore’s lair? These evils, some ancient beyond our pilgrimage from Tunaria, have torn and marred these precious, beautiful forests. Unfortunately, a [greater evil] has descended, and thus my presence here.

You say, ‘What about the greater evil?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘Not too far in the recent past did Firiona Vie, the lovely and gracious Champion of Tunare, return to our homelands. In her return, she sought to bring forth the avatar of our sacred Mother to seek guidance on her path — the path of Elven Kind. Little did the Champion know that The Faceless was close at bay, and through means unknown, his power was greater than that of our sacred Mother’s. In a petty display of his new found power, the Lord of Fear [furthered the corruption] of these natural lands.

You say, ‘What furthered the corruption?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘I cannot say for sure, and neither can our elders. None know for certain how or why this was done. All we know is that [the beings that were closest to Tunare’s grace] were reaved from her grasp, and now roam as the undead or worse.

You say, ‘What about the beings that were closest to Tunare’s grace?’

Talisyn Stormwing closes his eyes and bows his head for a moment as if in mourning. ‘The Faerie Folk that called this place their home have been changed into unnatural monsters of Cazic’s will. They thirst for mortal blood and flesh, and have lost all innocent, grace, and reason that was once their existence. But they seem incomparable to [the greatest loss] to be turned in Cazic-Thule’s favor.

You say, ‘What is the greatest loss?’

Talisyn Stormwing raises his head, his features remaining solemn but stern. ‘Equestrielle, the maiden unicorn, was corrupted by The Faceless himself and through vile trickery, he convinced the angered and frightened Firiona to remove her horn to cease the spreading of the disease. In honor and regret, the Champion did so, but now that once beautiful and sacred being roams as a blood thirsty, uncaring monster who kills any and all mortal beings. She is why I was sent, as The Heartwood Master knew that any other would end her life in mercy or the others she would harm and thus he entrusted to me [these tasks].’

You say, ‘what about these tasks?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘I am here to observe, warn the travelers that would pass through these infected lands, and to gather what evidence that I can to further the research of the council of magics at Felwithe. However, as I am the only one that has been charged with such tasks, it has been quite difficult. I do not know if I can withstand seeing such destruction and chaos before even I find mercy to be the proper route. If only they would send [assistance], if only for a day.’

You say, ‘I will assist you’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘I would be eternally grateful for your company, _____ and your pledge to this cause. However, I cannot expect anything of you. If [you are sure] that you would be willing to aid all of the Faydark, then I will be willing to give forward what knowledge I have gathered thus far.’

You say, ‘I am sure’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘Then I thank you, _____, and the entire Faydark thanks you. I have been studying and gathering evidence of the [Frightlings], or the distorted Pixies. I have already given several specimens of these creatures to the researchers, but I have found a great use for them beyond research. If you can bring to me one of their every so tiny skulls, I will do all in my power to cleanse that object so that it may aid you further in the tasks of the forest.’

You say, ‘What about the frightlings?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘The Frightlings are what the corrupted Pixies have been calling themselves. I have found through my extensive scouting of the area that one called Bilewretch who acts as their leader. I have dreamed for many days now of his destruction at my bow, but unfortunately that would cause me to abandon my post, and leave myself vulnerable to attacks from the [Undead Sprites.] However, as you have pledged yourself to the cause, if you would bring me proof of Bilewretch’s destruction, I shall reward you greatly for your service.’

You say, ‘What about the undead sprites?’

Talisyn Stormwing says ‘They are the twisted monsters of what used to be the noble Faeries of the forest. Now, they are but fleshy beings that desire only to bring death for their dark amusements. As with the Frightlings, these unnatural beasts are lead by a fearsome creature that has named himself Bloodboil. Another despicable being that I wish to bring a swift death to, but cannot for fear of abandoning my post and failing my master. If you would be so brave and bring to me proof of this monster’s demise, your efforts will not go unrewarded.’

Valizrae D`Tora

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘It appears you are the one who is screaming Zikk’

Dorvias N`Keth says, ‘Do not forget me dragon, for I shall not forget the headache you have caused this day.’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘How could I forget one like you Dorvias?’ Zavo`Zatanov smiles. Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘He knows to respect his elders.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Lanys is searching to piece Malevolence together still.’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘I thank those of you that aided me in defeating, Irin`ka, and those of you that aided him, pray that I do not learn of it. For i am sure that you would be quite tasty.’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘Know this, my opinions of these rumors remains the same. ‘

Slovak says, ‘How many pieces of Malevolence have been found?’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Lanys has only found one piece thus far’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘1 piece, Slovak.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘She searches for the second piece as we speak’

Slovak says, ‘How may we mortals help in delaying her?’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘No, Lanys has grown quite powerful, you would not be a match for her’

Zikk says, ‘mortals can’t we must wait for firona vie or some such’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘He was a companion, nothing more, Zikk. And my history doesn’t change.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘I thought Irin`ka a trusted friend. I was mistaken, but I was biased.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘I am much more objective on the views of world happenings.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘I am certain of one thing. There is no war.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘There is no WAR.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘I know much of thise world. I have lived many centuries.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘The gods are not at war, Donjira. All of the events are unrelated.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘No, Slovak. What is happening with Lanys is separate from what is happening with Cazic and Firiona. Of this I am sure.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘I have studied long and hard on the history of this world.’

Donjira says, ‘So how shall we classify it when they fight?’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘When who fights, Donjira?’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Lady Zavo, I must take my leave now. If the second piece of Malevolence is within the Ring of Scales possession, Lanys shall surely come for you.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Be ready for his assault.’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘They have fought against the beginnings of time and it is a conflict that will never end. It is not a war. ‘

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Bertoxxulous has no business in this’ Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘He is not invovled period’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘Neriak’s army and Lanys’ forces are gearing up to fight one another. Not the forces of light.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Bertoxxulous shall not strike’ Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘None of my visions from Innoruuk speak of Bertoxxulous’ Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘You question the Prophet to Innoruuk?’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘Faenyar, I have studied Norrath since long before any of you. I would know if a war was on the horizon.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Lady Zavo is correct in her assumptions, this war you speak of does not exist’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘I was close to Irin`ka. I trusted him. I am not deceived on the goings on of the world.’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘I have come and you have asked me questions.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘If you wish to remain ignorant to the truth, do not ask’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘I have answered them honestly.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘Believe what you will, but there is no war.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘And they have asked me about it.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘As a historian of sorts, I have told you what I know to be true.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘I do not believe any have spoken of this war but yourselves’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘So long as the staff remains in pieces, there is no threat’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘We cannot allow this staff to be made whole again!’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘This is not an option.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘If it is reassembled and falls into the hands of Lanys, she shall surely attempt to destroy the Teir`dal nation’ Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Along with anyone else who stand in her way’ Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘She was spurned by Innoruuk, there is now a new chosen’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘Lanys has fallen from grace.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘The Ring of Scale has always taken care of itself, and it always shall.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Lanys has fallen from the grace of Innoruuk’ Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘She still retains her power, but not her position’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Valizrae D`Tora, still but a child, is the new chosen.’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘There is much to be learned from watching, Donjira.’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘Where do you think that my wisdom comes?’ Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘She is the Daughter of Innoruuk. His blood runs through her.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Her power is not funneled to her by Innoruuk, it was given to her completely at birth.’ Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Until her death, she shall continue to wield it’

Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘I must be off to report all of this to the Ring of Scale. Thank you again for helping me with Irin`ka Set.’

Ashteth T`Dral says, ‘Malevolence was disassembled because it has the ability to take power from Innoruuk’

Zavo`Zatanov nods to those in attendance. Zavo`Zatanov says, ‘Learn from my words. I speak the truth.’

The Unclaimed Eye

The Unclaimed Eye
A Gorowyn Sarnak Creation Story

When the gods first came together to make the races of Norrath, they organized rows of many colored round stones before them. They divided these stones up, and when one of the gods would finish molding a new race, they would place the stones near the top of the head, giving the new race sight and life. In this way each of the races were made and placed upon the earth.

When it came time to create the Iksar, Cazic-Thule spent many long hours boasting that he had finally found the perfect design. This new race would be faster, smarter, and more versatile than any he had ever created, and leagues ahead of anything the other gods had designed – of this, Cazic-Thule was certain.

He locked himself away and worked and worked at the first Iksar, destroying them time and time again as they came up imperfect.

Finally, he found what he believed to be the final design, and set about giving it life. When he went to retrieve the stones for the Iksar, he found that one of them was missing. Howling in rage, he tore apart the Plane of Fear looking for it, uprooting trees and taking buildings apart stone by stone so that he left a wake of rubble and plant matter. But the stone was nowhere to be found.

Little did he know that the stone had fallen from his workbench and rolled and rolled until it fell straight into Norrath, landing deep in the jungles of Kunark.

Cazic-Thule was furious, but he grudgingly completed the process of creating the Iksar. He had invested far too much into these creatures to simply let them go. He took the remaining stone intended for the Iksar and split it in two, creating a finished, but imperfect, race.

By virtue of Cazic-Thule’s brilliant design, the Iksar were still a formidable people, but they were not what he had set out to accomplish, and for that, he would never forgive them.

Centuries later, the imperfect Iksar set about to create a slave race; these slaves would come to be known as the Sarnak. Blending their own life with that of the dragon, they inadvertently created something greater than themselves, and in time, these children would come to betray and overthrow them. However, these Sarnak will still imperfect beings, as they were the progeny of Cazic-Thule’s blundered creation, and spent many years in slavery. Though they may have been greater than the Iksar, they were still not the champions Cazic-Thule had foreseen.

Just as the unfinished Iksar had sought to create something better than themselves, so eventually did these imperfect Sarnak. It was their fortune that in a deeply secluded place, they came across the long lost stone of Cazic-Thule. They did not know exactly what they had in their hands, but they did know that it was powerful indeed.

They began to work at creating a new slave race; never realizing that with this power, their creations would be capable of casting off their rule even more easily than they had thwarted the Iksar.

And so it was that this new race was made more completely than either the Iksar or the original Sarnak. They were not quite to Cazic-Thule’s original design because of the dragon blend, but they were still great.
The Sarnak knew they had found perfection, and quickly destroyed the original group, sensing their ability to rise up and overcome them. Had they been wise, they would have abandoned the effort, but in their arrogance, they believed that with careful and rigorous manipulation, they could raise a second group of these new Sarnak to follow their orders.

They were wrong.

A hero, who we now know only as Gorowyn, rose from among these perfect ones and led us in revolution. Unfortunately, all were destroyed in this first effort, and the world lost the perfect ones for a time. The original Sarnak, knowing they could no longer call themselves true Sarnak, began to call themselves Di’Zok.

Later, beings even less worthy than the Di’Zok came and found the secrets of our creation. They recreated the perfect ones, and in trying to subjugate us, found their demise. Now we were free, and ready to claim our destiny.

At first, we knew nothing of where we had come from, but in time, we found documentation of what had come before. We learned of our hero Gorowyn, and how he led our people against our creator captors, and of the magic that made us superior to all who had come before.

We came to know ourselves as the chosen of Norrath. After all, hadn’t we killed our own gods, our own creators?

Knowing that we had nothing to fear from the lesser denizens of Norrath, we raised a city and established our presence on the world that would be ours one day. We named it Gorowyn; in honor of he who had shown us our destiny and led us to cast off the reigns of imperfect beings. None can challenge us, for we are Sarnak, the final embodiment of Cazic-Thule’s perfect design, and finally we have the life he wished to give us so long ago.

The Rise of Ykesha

The Rise of Warlord Ykesha
The True Grozmok
In the darkness of night, secluded from the eyes of many of his fellow trolls, a troll shaman named Zraxth had a vision. The trolls of Guk were no match for the Rallosian Empire, and the trolls believed it was a matter of time before the mighty ogres would march into the troll city of Guk. Zraxth was among the first of the trolls to turn from the teachings of Cazic-Thule and follow the doctrine of Hate, becoming a follower of Innoruuk. He beseeched his new lord for guidance, looking for a way to defeat the ogres, to protect the city of Gulc from the Rallosian war machine. The Prince of Hate came to him in a dream, and said he would provide the information, but to perform the necessary ritual Zraxth would need the blood of the high priests of Cazic-Thule. Zraxth gathered his followers and carried out the grim deed, slaughtering the high priests as they slept. The followers of Zraxth set up the ritual as Innoruuk

For days, Zraxth simply sat, neither sleeping nor eating. His acolytes watched over him, waiting for him to awaken and deliver the message from Innoruuk on their salvation. Finally, on the eighth day, the shaman’s eyes snapped open, sunken and glaring in their sockets. Without flinching or looking away, the shaman began to speak in slow, resounding tones. The disciples began to feverishly copy the words of Zraxth, but found that the ink simply ran like blood off any parchment on which they attempted to write the words the shaman spoke. Exasperated, the disciples tried to have Zraxth repeat his statements to them, but he would not acknowledge their presence at all, and simply continued speaking. When all seemed lost, the shaman rose to his feet, and turned to the large stone they had set in the center of their camp. Even as he continued to speak, he gathered a bowl of the blood of the elders the disciples had used days ago in preparation
Zraxth then took to chiseling out the vision he had seen on the surface of the stone itself. This he did with precision and meticulousness, in sharp contract to his apparent unresponsive state. No movement was wasted, and even the smallest chip in the stone was done with the utmost care and purpose. Each of the symbols he crafted would flare with a purplish flame, leaving the carving glowing with radiant heat. Burns were apparent on Zraxth’s hands and arms, but he did not appear to notice — he continued to speak and chisel at the stone, pausing neither as he worked tirelessly. When the carving was completed, the shaman, bloodied and burned over his body, spoke his last words, and fell lifeless to the ground. The disciples burned the body of the prophetic shaman, and scattered the ashes throughout the area of the ritual. The disciples then deciphered the inscription left behind by their spiritual leader.

Over the course of many years after the Stone’s creation, strong warriors began to contend that they were, in fact, the hero mentioned in the Grozmok Stone’s prophecy. Many bloody battles were fought over the claim, as each strove to prove that they were the true hero of the Grozmok. The clans began to rally behind their strongest warriors, and minor skirmishes began to collapse into full scale blood feuds, as each group looked to be the ruling clan of the Innothule trolls. Nothing seemed able to stem the tide of violence, and none seemed interested in stopping it the rule of Grobb was all that mattered. For years, chaos reigned unchecked. During this time, the Rallosian Empire began to hear rumors of the existence of the Grozmok Stone and the prophecy of the legendary troll hero. Although the trolls themselves were organized and not likely to prove a threat on their own, the ogres began to fear

It was during this time of strife and war that Warlord Ykesha rose to power. He was unmatched among his people in skill, cunning, and ferocity, and he quickly earned the respect of all who fought with him. He quickly rose to lead his clan, ruthlessly dispatching any who tried to challenge his rule. His clan, which he renamed Clan Ykesha in his own honor, had taken to raiding the swamps outside the city of Guk, looking for new artifacts and treasures that might give them an advantage over their rival clans. The scouts of Ykesha came upon a lost Rallosian stronghold, which sat undisturbed and hidden by the overgrowth in the swamp. As they gathered what items of worth they could find, they happened upon the Grozmok Stone deep within the stronghold’s lower chambers. They hauled it back to their clan, where it was recognized as an artifact from the troll’s past. Warlord Ykesha ordered his shaman

Once word of the prophecy of the Grozmok Stone began to circulate among the clans, the cycle of war began to change. At first, jealous clans viciously attacked Clan Ykesha, looking to topple the Warlord and claim the Stone for their own. Clan Ykesha easily withstood all opposition, handily defeating the other clans who sought to claim the Grozmok stone for themselves. As one clan after another fell, whispers of Warlord Ykesha’s claim – that he was the Grozmok that was prophesied – began to appear more and more legitimate. Rival clans began to offer themselves as thralls, joining Clan Ykesha to follow the legendary Grozmok. For a time at least, the trolls looked like they would become a terrible new empire with the mythical hero of the troll race in command. Although some clans continued to fight against Clan Ykesha, the size and strength of the ruling clan was more than any rival could hope to overcome.

Tales of the Alliz Ew

The ferocity of the lizardmen of the Feerrott is legendary, yet it seems there is another side to the stories told of them by outsiders. This is a collection of short stories written by lizardmen and translated from the Rallosian.
“Tales of the Alliz Ew,” translated by Pearl Honeywine — Being a collection of short stories by anonymous lizardmen of both the Alliz Evol Ew and the Alliz Tae Ew of the Feerrott. As these are translations, they can be somewhat difficult to grasp but are worth a look.

“Two Tales.” You speak of those with two minds, two hearts and I speak of the two tales. The first tale, my brethren, listen! For the ogres listened not and all that remains are our memories, longer than the tail of the Queen. Did they forget their promise? Yes, it seems that they did forget and will pay the price. The Temple of Cazic-Thule, set aside from them, yet they forgot. —

— In the long-ago did Rallos, the god of War and mighty Cazic-Thule cross hands and agree that the army of one would not defile the Temple of the other. Yet, the Rallosians forgot this and in they crossed the Temple’s threshhold to declare the Temple was theirs! —

— In the long-ago did this happen, where the Rallosians stood in the Temple and gloated over its treasures and put the blood of the Alliz Ew into the sacrificial vessels as should not have been done, no ritual or rite to purify. And yes, they later paid but in the hour of our need, we could do nothing but gnash our teeth and thrash our tails. —

— That is the first tale, the ending which I need not tell for all know how that vile army was destroyed. The second of my tales talks of the Alliz Tae Ew, those that now are found inside the Temple that remains. To the east, they are and inside the Temple itself, they are. They are strong of will and in their worship of the darkness, did participate in the rituals of darkness such that they now do not see. The weak, they will eat. So say I, and so it is.

“The Vessel.” Carved of stone, its surface is black from the years of use. Wide is the brim and it is shallow. Handles once it had that were defiled by the Rallosians, yet its purpose is not changed. In service will they offer their blood, whether willing or not. Stained it is, as are the Alliz Tae Ew, by the precious offerings made to the gods and the Queen. Shallow may be the vessel, but deep is the honor with which we use it.

“The Vines.” The vines hang low to tangle those who do not look. Mists that thicken the air swirl around to cloak us in grey. Look! You are in the path and see me not. I raise my spear — the spear of my forefathers, cut at the right time of the old moon and dipped in bitter juices. Up I raise my arm, slowly. Listen! The whistle of the spear slicing the air. You hear it not in time to move, only in time to fear. Over and again, I raise my spear! The fallen see me not, just as they see not the vines.

“The Hand.” In the long-ago, He walked among us and reaching out His hand, touched one or another, beckoning. They could not but bend to His will and He caused them to begin the crafting of His statue. Always they would start with His hands, shaping them from wrist to fingertip. Yet when He would return to His other charges, they would cease to carve, and so upon His return, they began again. At His wrist. And so we say, that is why that is what is left.

“Green Dawn.” They trampled us and defiled the Temple. Then they moved onward, slaying all those in their path and we watched. We felt it from the distance, eating what we could and waiting. They pressed onward and thought everyone would fall before them. Until the day of the Green Dawn, when we felt the cloud fall upon the Rallosian Army like thick mist. Their cries we heard and heeded not and in the dawn of the next day, they lay defeated and inedible.

“Waterfall.” The river flows through the valley, mist curling from the surface in the heat. The darkness is great, broad leaves keeping out the light and trapping the sounds. We took the captives to the river to purify them and one worked free from his bindings and jumped into the river, seeking to hide beneath the vapors on its surface. We found some the next day on the shore where the waterfall meets the sea.

Not all lizardmen are literate, or even capable of speaking anything but their own language. It is fascinating to see something of their thoughts from stories written in their own language and translated. To know more about them would be very interesting, indeed.

Servant of the Temple

This is a cautionary tale, although it is difficult to determine what is being discouraged. Does it refer to keeping one’s word? Or is it that the bearer of bad news must be prepared for anything?
In the long-ago, the Temple of Cazic-Thule stood mighty among all the temples to the lesser gods. For many long years, it was the focal point of worship of and sacrifice to the god of fear. Many were the servants of this Temple, for Cazic-Thule was worthy of worship and praise. All who belonged to the Alliz Ew provided for the Temple’s maintenance, including lesser beings and unwanted hatchlings to serve as either servants or sacrifices — sometimes both.

Now, in this time the Alliz Ew did also worship Alliz Onu, She Who Creates, but being endowed with high intelligence they also knew that Cazic-Thule and his ilk would not play second best to Her. So they worshipped Her and made offerings to Her, but they build the Temple so that Cazic-Thule would see their faith and leave them to worship as they saw fit.

Each servant in the Temple served a particular purpose and when that purpose was completed, so was their service. At that time, they would be sacrificed. Vashahkti, the youngest hatchling of his family, was not like the other servants. His job was to wash the vessel into which the sacrificial liquors were poured and while this purpose was completed each day, Vashahkti was filled with such reverence for his task that the priests of the Temple kept him.

In many ways, Vashahkti was fortunate for though the Alliz Ew were harsh masters, beyond the Temple doors were encamped the army of Rallos Zek. Vashahkti knew that the Rallosians were building their empire anew and that they were subjugating all the Alliz Ew they found in the Feerrott. He also knew that they were bound by ancient custom: the followers of Rallos Zek were not to defile the Temple of Cazic-Thule, nor could the followers of Cazic-Thule defile a temple to Rallos Zek.

Beyond the Temple’s walls, the ogres of the Rallosian Army celebrated each victory by feasting on the stores of food raided from those they had conquered. They roasted birds by the hundreds, ate unhatched Alliz Ew eggs and drank a vile and quickly brewed ale of substandard quality. As every day brought news of another victory, the ogres surrounding the Temple celebrated each day.

It happened that one day, when Vashahkti went outside the Temple one day on an errand, he found himself surrounded by Rallosians. They pushed him this way and that and made sport with him. Vashahkti said nothing. Tiring of their play, the ogres kicked Vashahkti and sent him on his way. As he walked off, he heard one of them say, “Did you see the gemstones glittering on that one’s vest? They say the whole Temple is filled with treasures like that.”

Vashahkti slipped into the woods to listen to the Rallosians. Another ogre gave a great belch and said, “Those weren’t no gemstones; they looked like rocks.” Still another ogre slapped the first one on his helmet and said, “If they was gemstones, why didn’t we pinch them when we had that lizard in our grasp?” The first ogre snarled, “You are all as stupid as they day you were born. I tell you, the whole Temple is filled with gemstones, and I’m going to get me some.”

Returning to the Temple, Vashahkti at once told the head priest all he had overheard. The head priest snapped, “They will not dare cross into the Temple, for that will be the last action they take.” The words had no sooner left his mouth when the Temple’s doors flew open and in rushed a band of ogres. Vashahkti knew all the secret ways of the Temple as he had lived there now for many years. In the confusion, he slipped down a black corridor and listened to the chaos and mayhem behind him, cursing the Rallosians as he ran.

Vashahkti made for an inner sanctum of the Temple. He was Alliz Ew; he was not running from battle. No, his purpose was a greater one: to sound the alarm through all Feerrott and alert the Sleeping Watcher whose presence the Alliz Ew felt, but never saw. He struck the iron gong so vigorously that it shattered, piercing him with its shards. Vashahkti knew no pain; he only knew he must raise the Watcher.

Behind Vashahkti, the Watcher stretched, unfurling after years of hidden slumber. It knew instantly that the Temple had been defiled and that it would need to act. “You have done well,” hissed the Watcher, standing now at its full height. Vashahkti turned and stared in awe, then prostrated himself to worship it. The Watcher, Avatar of Fear, yawned and stretched again before seizing Vashahkti and allowing him to be the first sacrifice toward the ultimate defeat of the Rallosian Army.

Journal of Wu, Seeker of Enlightenment

My Quest for Enlightenment
by Wu, a humble servant of Tranquility

Long have I traveled across Norrath, trying to learn all I can about our world and its inhabitants. There is much to see and experience, and too often the citizens of the various empires close themselves off from anything beyond their own borders.

The road to enlightenment is long, and though solitary in nature, one still needs a guide to keep on the proper path. I looked to the writings of Zan Fi, a wise monk who not only mastered all forms of combat but learned that the battle within is much more crucial than the fight against any opponent.

It has been my honor to share what I have learned with others when I can. Just as Zan Fi’s writings were of benefit to me, I hope that my words bring aid and enlightenment to those who wish to undertake a similar journey. If they do, then my presence in this world will have meaning.

Of the many places I have seen, the forest known as the Lesser Faydark is of particular interest to me. Though at first glance it is but a sleepy shadow of its more expansive sibling, there is an air of magic and wonder here that transcends even the Greater Faydark.

I believe part of this forest’s uniqueness is due to the touch of planar and extra-dimensional forces. The presence of the gods is strong here, and the fact that both Tunare and Cazic-Thule have manifested themselves in the place has touched everything from the flora to its inhabitants.

In this forest, light and dark intermix to form shades of grey. Orcs and bandits are drawn here, as are the magical fay races and even the rare unicorn. But there are also odd dichotomies, such as the brownies who serve the power of Growth yet strike with a great wrath at any outsider, no matter their purpose.

The mysterious shadowed men are also drawn here. After much study, I now believe they are attracted to sources of great power on Norrath and perhaps other worlds. Though initially they assume no visible form, I have seen some others lurking here in dark places and now believe these beings may be of the Void itself.

It may be that the mingling of good and evil here makes this place what it is, and these powers hold each other in check. I feel as though this forest will always be in conflict, and even if one side would seem to prevail, its nemesis will be waiting for its turn to take hold and shift the balance once again.

Furthermore, I believe the potency of the magical forces at play weaken the barriers between realities. After much meditation, I may have made contact with a being from such a place. A presence speaks to my mind, calling itself Vorash. It communes with me and seeks to learn about the ways of the monk.

I intend to learn more about this Vorash and determine its intentions. But I must not neglect the dangers in this realm wither. My campsite here in the forest has not gone unnoticed, and I believe malevolent forces are drawing close to me. I must be on my guard at all times.

Whoever or whatever observes me, I fear they may be seeking the weapon I carry, a blessed armament of some potency. I must ensure it does not fall into the hands of those who would corrupt it, yet my means of escape may be somewhat limited. Perhaps an ally can be found to keep it safe for me.

In the meantime I shall continue my meditations and observations. The path I walk is filled with challenges, but despite the dangers of the special place I believe I will draw closer to ultimate Tranquility by dwelling here.

If I am fortunate, perhaps one day I shall write more to offer additional guidance to those who seek it. May your journey, dear reader, be as rewarding as mine has been.

From Pond to Paladin, Vol. I

From Pond to Paladin
The Origins of Froglok and Man
by Glupurp Stoneskipper
Paladin of Marr
My noble kinsman, I bring to you the knowledge of our origins, as well as the origin of Man that has been bestowed upon me by the scholars of the City of New Tanaan, and those who have visited the Halls of Honor, home of our Lord Mithaniel Marr. I am but a humble Paladin of Mithaniel Marr, born like many of our kind in the swamps of Southern Antonica, and deserve no adulation for penning these words. This work is in honor of all Froglok, current, past, and yet to come.

In the early ages of Norrath, before the arrival of Man, the Marr Twins did walk the face of Norrath. The children of a God of Power, Tarew Marr the Water Lord, the Marr Twins searched amongst the mortals of Norrath a cause to champion and embrace with their divinity. The Gods of Nature puzzled over the Marr Twins absence of a divine purpose, and the Gods of Influence scoffed at the twins for seeking such a purpose amongst the mortals. The most malicious of the Gods, Innoruuk, and Cazic-Thule, sought to corrupt the young twins to strengthen the forces of hatred and fear.

Innoruuk, the twisted God of Hatred and Spite sent his mortal followers to Tarew’s daughter, Erollisi Marr, to tempt her and seduce her into the darkness. With the wisdom imparted to the Goddess by her father, she saw through the Teir’Dals deceptions, and their wickedness was more visible to her eyes than even their physical forms. So it came to pass that Erollisi journeyed to the lands of Tunare’s fair elves, to escape the sickening advances of the Teir’Dal. It was in the early kingdom of the elves, that Erollisi did find warmth, peace, and beauty in the harsh realm of the mortals and it was there that she embraced and was in return embraced by a most mortal of traits. It was there she found love.

While Erollisi fended off the advances of Innoruuk’s mortal agents, the forces of Cazic-Thule beset her twin brother, Mithaniel Marr. Serpents, phantoms, and all manner of frightful creatures conjured and commanded by Cazic-Thule mortal minions came to Mithaniel to assault his body and mind. Mithaniel was no mortal however, and his will was strong, the minions of Thule could not instill within him the fear of their dark lord. They did succeed however, in luring the brave Mithaniel to the swamps of Norrath, the deadly, dank, lands where the creatures of Cazic-Thule were the strongest and most numerous. An army of Trolls, Lizard Folk, and forgotten creatures of unspeakable horror beset Mithaniel Marr, and so it came to pass that he became a captive to the minions of the Lord of Fear.

Mithaniel, imprisoned in magical bonds provided to his captors by Cazic-Thule, and tortured by relentless monstrosities, prayed to his father day and night for forgiveness and salvation. The prayers continued, unanswered, until the brave God, weary from torture and weakened by the dark magic of Cazic-Thule fell into a deep slumber.

It was then that Terris-Thule visited the slumbering God to inflict his sleep with nightmares more horrible than the events he had endured at the hands of his captors during his waking hours. However, at the beseeching of her father, Cazic-Thule, Terris was not permitted to inflict such terror onto Mithaniel Marr until after she first deceived him through his dreams and stole the gift of life from his body. So Terris did as her father commanded and then the slumbering horrors began.

From Pond to Paladin, Vol. II

Morell-Thule, the forsaken son of Cazic, and brother of Terris, took notice of Terris manipulations of the slumbering God, for while Terris is the Queen of Nightmares, Morell is the King of Dreams. For reasons unknown, perhaps simply to foul the plans of his wicked father and sister, Morell-Thule stole the gift of life that had been taken from the slumbering Mithaniel and escaped into his Demi-Plane of Dreams. Knowing that his enraged family would soon visit his home, Morell divided Mithaniel’s Gift of Life, scattering one half across all the swamps of Norrath, the sacred lands of his father, Cazic-Thule.
Where Mithaniel’s Gift of Life fell upon the swamps of Norrath, the first Froglok Tads were born. Those first Tads had the hardest trials of our people. Until that point, the swamps belonged only to the foul and destructive creatures of the dark gods. Fortunately the gift of life that had brought our first ancestors into being also empowered them with the bravery and valor Mithaniel Marr had exhibited during his trials in the mortal realms.

Once the swamps had been seeded with the first of our kind, the Lord of Dreams, Morell-Thule, visited Mithaniel Marr’s twin sister, Erollisi Marr. While the Goddess of Love blissfully rested in the lands of the fair elves, Morell-Thule visited her in a dream and gave to her the second half of Mithaniel’s Gift of Life. It was soon to be evident to the fair elves that their visiting daughter of the Gods was with child and they took her to an uninhabited region of the frozen northlands of Antonica, where they could tend to and guard her in seclusion.

While the elves watched after Erollisi, the first of our ancestors grew from Tads into adult Frogloks, and Morell-Thule gifted them with dreams of the imprisoned Mithaniel Marr, and visions of a means to free the brave son of Tarew. So it came to pass that from all the swamps of Norrath, the first Frogloks rose in arms against the minions of Cazic-Thule, fighting valiantly to the site of Mithaniel Marr’s imprisonment, guided by visions from the Lord of Dreams.

for uncounted years the Frogloks battled the evil inhabitants of Norrath’s swamplands, learning the lessons of both victory and defeat. Alas, Cazic-Thule is an ancient and powerful God and his minions are numerous and diverse. Try as they might, the ancestor Frogloks could not reach their imprisoned God, but never did they cease their efforts, despite the daunting odds.

Then, after some time, a small army arrived on the borders of the swamp that was Mithaniel Marr’s prison. Not an army of Frogloks, but an army of Northmen, the children of Erollisi Marr. They too had been guided by visions and dreams of the imprisoned God from whose life they were conceived. Seeking justice for the imprisonment of their father, the Northmen joined with the Froglok armies and the alliance of Froglok and Man succeeded in freeing their father Mithaniel Marr. The minions of Cazic-Thule and the Avatar of Fear himself fell before the unity and valor of the children of Marr. For the first time in the history of Norrath, the swamps were not safe for the evil creations of the dark gods.

It was in the brave and selfless actions of the ancestor Frogloks and Northmen that Mithaniel Marr discovered the mortal trait of Valor, and because of Morell-Thule’s honorable delivering of the truth of our origins to our ancestors in visions and dream, Mithaniel also chose to champion the virtue of honesty as well as valor.

Such is the tale of my Lord Mithaniel Marr, and the origins of my fellow Frogloks, and of our distant brethren, the race of Men. It is a shame that so many of our kind, as well as many of the race of men, have strayed from the virtues of our ancestors. My Mithaniel Marr bless us, his faithful servants, with the powers to redeem our fallen kin from the clutches of evil.