Category Archives: Dartain

Places of Norrath: Paineel

Overview of Paineel

Paineel is the city of the Cazicites, the powerful necromancers who once lived among the High Men of Erudin but were outcast due to their unfailing interest in the dark arts. Referred to as “Heretics” by the Erudites the Cazicites relocated to one of the most powerful and naturally magical areas in all of Norrath.

Buried deep into the sides of The Hole, the dark city of Paineel is seldom visited by outsiders. Most die on the journey down before ever seeing the black spires of the stone that marks the entrance to the city; either from being attacked due to mistrust or from the fall into the pit known as The Hole due to not watching their step. Strangers are never welcomed unless they have something desirable to offer. Regardless of the nature of the visit, a sacrifice of blood is required to gain entry.

The city of Paineel offers a sloping, grassy yard where pupils may hone the first of their fledgling skills. Undead guardsmen stand watch at the outer gates, insuring that those in duress can flee back to the city without their would-be killers following them.

Those who graduate from the slopes and ready for a stiffer challenge may enter the caverns of the warrens which lay wedged into the rocky cliffs that encase the yard.

Background Lore
The Erudites had a problem. Some of their people were beginning to practice the dark, corrupt art of Necromancy. The Erudites labeled these misguided mages as Heretics and drove them forth from the city of Erudin.

In the ensuing battle magic clashed at a titanic level. At the climax of the battle the earth itself was ripped asunder blasting a series of craters deep into the wounded earth. The greatest of these was called The Hole.

Both sides were dismayed and frightened by the devastation they had unleashed. Separated by the crater and weary beyond belief both sides retired from the field. The Erudites returned to their home and the Heretics retreated into the caverns uncovered during the creation of The Hole. The Heretics, decimated in the battle, practiced the ways of secrecy and slowly faded from the memory of the Erudites.

They may have been forgotten, but the Heretics were not inactive. Deep in The Hole they built the hidden city of Paineel.

For many years they practiced their dark art, perfecting their mastery. They explored the underground passages of The Hole. It was during these explorations that they came across the Vault of Living Stone. This artifact was created by Brell Serilis to seal the passageway he had opened from the Plane of Underfoot to Norrath. It was through this passageway that he had brought his creations to Norrath. Once he had finished his seeding he had put the Vault of Living Stone in place. The Vault was a magical construct which would perpetually repair itself and keep Norrath safe from the more vicious denizens of the Plane of Underfoot.

Once they had found the Vault the Heretics began to experiment with ways to harness its power. Inevitably they made a mistake and the Vault was damaged. It began to decline and creatures from the Plane of Underfoot began to pass through to Norrath. At first the incursions were minor, but eventually they became overwhelming. A great force of earth elementals lead by the Earthen Lord Yael swarmed through the vault and attacked hidden Paineel.

The Heretics were outmatched. As their city was besieged, the majority of citizens retreated to the surface pulling down the passageway behind them. A small group, lead by Dartain of the Dark Truth, had chosen to remain behind and attempt to repair the vault. These heroes managed to create The Hatch. This device when attached to the Vault would repair the damage the Heretics had caused and keep the passageway to the Plane of Underfoot closed.

So the band set out into the depths of The Hole. Relying on their magical prowess the group made its way stealthily to the Vault.

While placing the Hatch the band was beset by the forces of Yael. Those on the Norrathian side of the passageway quickly fell. Only Dartain survived the attack by fleeing into the Underfoot. Yael and his minions could not remove the Hatch, but there was one connection yet to be made.

Dartain hid until all was clear then returned to make the final connection. He was lucky in that the connection could be made from the Underfoot side of the passage. Yael’s forces not fearing attack from their home guarded the Norrathian side. Dartain’s luck was at an end. While he could finish the installation, he could not go back to Norrath to perform the final ritual. It was from the Plane of Underfoot that he cast his incantations and in doing so he trapped himself in that place. Nothing more is known of Dartain’s fate.

Yael’s forces, not truly interested in things above the ground, settled into the ruins of Paineel and the surrounding areas of The Hole. To this day they vigorously protect their new kingdom.

The surviving Heretics caught between Yael below and Erudin above searched the upper reaches of the Hole. Finding a suitably hidden location they built a new home. This they named Paineel in memory of what was lost. Old Paineel, now a place of violent, elemental rage they were shunned but never forgot. The odd adventuresome Seeker of the Dark Truth, as the Heretics refer to themselves, will still make an occasional foray into the depths seeking to find some bit of old knowledge that lies hidden in Old Paineel.

Paineel has a guild master for each class that is available to Erudite followers of Cazic-Thule. Spell and tome merchants are also available for those classes. Here is a list of the main guildmasters:

Sern Adolia – (Cleric)
Coriante Verisue – (Necromancer)
Mandaril Dark Knife – (Shadow Knight)
City Resources
Paineel provides the basic necessities of adventuring: Bankers, a Soulbinder, Task Masters, augmentation needs, and merchants that sell backpacks, ale, bandages, food, drink, and fishing gear.

You’ll also find a Priest of Discord, Tradeskill Quest Masters, tradeskill crafting objects, and supply merchants for alchemy, baking, brewing jewelcrafting, pottery, tailoring, and blacksmithing.

Paineel connects to Toxxulia Forest, the Warrens, and there are two entrances to The Hole although one brings instant death.

Places of Interest
Paineel hosts a number of different buildings including several shops, taverns and guildhalls.

Hidden Lift
To protect themselves the Seekers have constructed a hidden lift that is the only access point to Paineel. Guards are stationed only on the hidden side of the lift to further conceal its location. In order to operate the lift each Seeker possesses a glowing key. If the key is lost a Seeker may ask one of the guards at the guardhouse for a replacement.

This is the only evidence that Paineel is located in the environs of The Hole. Its only purpose is to protect the young Seekers as they strive to increase their martial skills.

The Grand Staircase
Upon descending the Hidden Lift the first sight to greet a Seeker is the Grand Staircase. This area is often visited by the citizens of Paineel and is home to an ever-changing bazaar. Many goods and services not found elsewhere in the city can be found here.

Dartain’s Park
The columns and pool at the foot of the Grand Staircase honor the memory of the hero Dartain. Many of the notables of Paineel can be found here contemplating the Dark Truth.

The Fell Blade
The Fell Blade is the name of both the Paineel militia and the Shadowknights who follow the teachings of Cazic-Thule. The leader of the Fell Blade, Mandaril Dark Knife, can usually be found in the main hall of the Fell Blade, but sometimes he will be at the Tabernacle of Terror conferring with the leadership of the Harbingers of Fear.

The great smith, Faratain, has his shop within the confines of the militia house. Faratain and his brother Darton, descended from Dartain, often work in concert to create weapons of great power. Darton is a necromancer, member of the Seekers of the Dark Truth, and he uses his art to imbue power in the weapons and heavy armor created by Faratain. Faratain also offers various smithing supplies and the use of a Erudite forge and a regular forge.

Good Iva’s Tasty Treats
This bakery is the place to find all the goodies you will ever need. Iva Tersala, the proprietor, is a fine good-hearted lass. She pretends to be a follower of the Dark Truth, but in her heart she is a follower of Tunare. Iva has contacts throughout Norrath and feeds information on the doings of the Heretics to them.

Sinfully Handsome
Pardas Nalue, the owner, advertises that “You can get everything you need to be as handsome as Pardas Nalue except his devastating good looks at Sinfully Handsome.” Obviously he is quite enchanted with himself. He offers cloth armor and various tailoring supplies in his shop.

Pardas is not totally without merit, he does keep in close contact with Mordant Tather, the proprietor of the Silk Underground in Neriak. The valuable information he has about the Teir’Dal is the only reason most people in Paineel put up with his giant-sized ego.

The Final Reckoning
“Can’t take it with you? Then leave it here.” Never worry about your valuables if they are in the hands of Marsa Folor and her capable staff at this bank in Paineel.

False Idols
Once a sister of the Harbingers of Fear, Taria Clayspinner now offers up a selection of statues and symbols depicting all the gods of Norrath. No one knows the true reason behind Taria’s departure from service to Cazic, but rumor has it that a sordid affair with Prenton Nael, the leader of the Harbingers, is what caused her disillusionment with the faith. Visit this shop to purchase pottery supplies and to make use of the kiln.

Shackled Spirits
Taralani Rahnta, a retired necromancer, had too much power and nothing to do with it so he opened Shackled Spirits, a tavern. The unique thing about this establishment is that Taralani is the only employee, well living employee that is. Using his necromantic powers, Taralani has enslaved the souls of several Erudite men and women. These poor souls now tirelessly toil to fulfill the needs of Taralani and his guests. A brew barrel can be found inside this tavern and merchants here offer a variety of ales, wine, and other types of alcohol.

The Abattoir
Screams and shrieks are the only greeting that most people will receive as they enter the grounds of the Abattoir, the home of the Seekers of the Dark Truth. The loud noises are an unavoidable by-product of the research conducted therein.

The Seekers are a guild of necromancers who dedicate themselves to the pursuit of what lies behind the veil of death, that Dark Truth which they have glimpsed but not yet fully comprehended. While all citizens of Paineel describe themselves Seekers of the Dark Truth, only official members are fully vested with the knowledge and power of the guild.

Coriante Verisue: The Speaker of the Dark Truth, leader of the Seekers, is Coriante Verisue. She is the first woman to assume the mantle of the Speaker. Plotting for power is the name of the game in the Abattoir and Coriante is a master of that art in addition to her unrivalled necromantic powers. Coriante can often be found in the Hall of the Speaker sharing her insights into the Dark Truth with the younger initiates. If not in the hall, she might be in the ritual chamber delving deep beyond the veil.

Darton: A descendent of Dartain, Darton is Coriante’s chief rival and chief researcher of the guild. So far, Coriante has deflected all of Darton’s plots, but he is nothing if not persistent. Darton is usually found in the laboratory or ritual chamber.

Superior Supplies
This shop offers all the basic needs of the bold and arrogant adventurer. Geomar and Rallia Hapera have long helped prepare those daring Seekers who were planning a trip to Old Paineel.

The Poisoned Petal
Yvonne Ani, mistress of the green thumb, offers ervery plant or herb to anyone. She is beloved by the Seekers of the Dark Truth as many of her potions and herbs have enabled them to prolong the length of their experiments. Merchants here offer alchemy supplies.

Fortune’s Fancy
Dannis Faleet is the only jeweler in Paineel. This is the only reason that he is alive today. A myriad of accusations have been made against him by his customers, i.e. gems have been replaced with glass, coins given as change in his shop seem to be both thinner and lighter than other coins, etc. However, each time a charge is brought against him there is never enough evidence and the authorities have been extremely lenient. The Seekers need his wares, the Harbingers need his wares, and Darkglow palace needs his wares.

Athenaeum Necromantia
The importance of research into the Dark Truth would lead one to believe that a library specializing in necromantic knowledge would be of major importance in Paineel. To the contrary, necromancy is only a by-product of the knowledge of the Dark Truth. To the Seekers it is the Dark Truth that is important, not necromantic powers.

Despite a lack of respect from the Seekers, Talloth Vara, the chief librarian, is a dedicated supporter of Coriante. Books and scrolls line most of the walls in the library, but the truly remarkable works are in the personal care of Talloth.

Darkglow Palace
The Erudites would refer to this building as the heart of evil, but to the Seekers the palace is home of the Hand which Shields. Paineel has long been ruled by the triumvirate of Palace, the Seekers, and the Harbingers. It is the duty of Overlord Virate Manaar to protect the Seekers from harm so that they may work undisturbed.

The Tabernacle of Terror
Cazic-Thule has long played a part in the society of the Seekers. It is through the fear of their dying experiments that the majority of the knowledge of the Dark Truth has been uncovered. For this reason is Cazic-Thule revered above all gods.

The Tabernacle houses the Harbingers of Fear, the priests of Paineel. The leader of the Harbingers is Sern Adolia. He has ruled the Harbingers for many, many years. Members of the Harbingers only approach Sern if they have to, otherwise their fear keeps them at bay. The Fell Blade guild is subservient to the Harbingers of Fear.

Ruined Pavilions
Before the fall of Old Paineel these pavilions were used in rituals which required the stars, moon, or sun. Now they are nothing but ruins that mark the entrance to the underground areas of The Hole.


Deity involvement in Age’s End

You say, “Hail, Dartain”
Dartain says to you, “Welcome back. Tell me what happened.”
You say to Dartain, “I sounded the horn, as you suggested.”
Dartain says to you, “So, the horn worked, did it?”
You say to Dartain, “It did. It acted as a guide to Lodizal, a creature that evidently was blessed by none other than Prexus himself. It appears to be his duty to help the “destined ones” reach the shores of Velious.”
Dartain says to you, “Interesting. It seems that perhaps even the gods themselves are involved in this endeavor as well. I believe that we are on the right path, then, and the appearance of Lodizal is evidence of that. This is excellent.”
You say to Dartain, “What do we do now?”
Dartain says to you, “For now, I will continue to work on my studies here. I might need to call on you again for more assistance, as you have preformed admirably in every task I asked of you. For now, please go about your usual business. Im sure we will speak again.”
You say to Dartain, “Very well. Farewell to you for now.”

Prexus’ Chosen One

You find a tome that seems to describe creatures of incredible size seen around the shores of Velious. It speculates on their existence, saying that they seem to possess a power beyond creatures of their kind. This book appears to confirm what you found in the Deepwater Knight tome, but doesn’t expressly state Prexus’s name.
The following page does, however, bear the same symbol as the Deepwater Knight tome. It also seems to speak of Prexus, saying that other races on Velious worshiped the Ocean Lord. They also, evidently, had a method for summoning these immense beasts. It details assembling a horn, and gives information on the necessary parts.

You say, “Hail, Al’Kabor”
Al’Kabor says to you, “Welcome back, adventurer. Did you visit the city of New Halas?”
You say to Al’Kabor, “I did, and I believe I found some information we can use.”
Al’Kabor says to you, “Excellent. What were you able to find out?”
You say to Al’Kabor, “I found a tome bearing the sigil you asked me to investigate, detailing creatures that were chosen creatures of Prexus. These were massive creatures that were at the behest of Prexus, and could be tapped to do his bidding.”
Al’Kabor says to you, “Interesting. What more did you find?”
You say to Al’Kabor, “I was able to find instructions for creating a summoning horn for calling on one of these chosen creatures. I collected the pieces, and have assembled the horn.”
Al’Kabor says to you, “Very well, then. I don’t believe that the placement of the sigil is happenstance. You did the right thing by assembling the horn.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “We’re going to attempt to summon the creature, then?”
Al’Kabor says to you, “We are. I cannot be sure what will happen, but if for nothing else than to solve my own curiosity and to test my theory, let us see if the horn will do as it is intended to do.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “All right… how do we know the creature won’t simply attack us? We don’t know what is going to answer the call.”
Al’Kabor says to you, “Correct. We do not.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “This seems like a strange way to test a theory, to be honest. I should hope that you will come to my aid before I get devoured, should this thing turn malicious.”
Al’Kabor says to you, “Of course. Now, head to the docks, and blow the horn. Let’s see what answers.”
You receive a summoning horn.
You say to Al’Kabor, “Very well then.”


The Chelsith Stone Rings (prexus)

Al’Kabor says to you, “Indeed. What else did you find?”
You say to Al’Kabor, “It seemed like it was a symbol that was associated with Prexus, coming up frequently in texts relating to a “Chosen” being from of all places… Velious. I was wondering if maybe it was someone from Velious, but since that continent is lost, there’s no way to be certain.”
Al’Kabor says to you, “That’s because I don’t believe that it was someone from Velious, but Velious itself.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “I’m… I’m sorry, what do you mean?”
Al’Kabor says to you, “I think we might have been looking at this the wrong way. These aren’t all representative of beings, but are representative of many different things. While some are certainly beings, others appear to be events or objects.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “Like what?”
Al’Kabor says to you, “For example, I believe the Rune of Oblivion is less about Anashti Sul herself, and more about her return to Norrath. She became a herald, proving that return from Nothingness was possible. The Rune of Sundering represents the destruction of Luclin, and I believe that the Rune of Severing is the phasing of Odus into Ultera.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “I see. Is there a connection?”
Al’Kabor says to you, “Indeed! You see, these things fall on specific points of the prophecy. Certain things, like the Rune of Bayle and the Rune of Velious, fall on the inside ring. Others, such are the Rune of Sundering and Rune of Oblivion, fall on the second ring. This is no accident.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “What is your theory, then?”
Al’Kabor says to you, “Look at the sigils and what they represent. Look at how they are placed. What do you see?”
You say to Al’Kabor, “Well, if what you’re saying is correct, then the inner symbols seem to represent beings and places. Similarly, the outer ring would appear to be events – things that have happened in Norrath’s past represented on the Chelsith Stone.”
Al’Kabor says to you, “My theory is this. The sigils in the outer ring are a specific series of events. These events are somehow connected, either with each other or with a larger event that they all play a part in. As these events come to pass, we grow ever closer to the culmination of Age’s End.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “What is the inner ring?”
Al’Kabor says to you, “I believe they are instructions.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “Instructions? For what?”
Al’Kabor says to you, “Preventing the coming of Age’s End. I believe that in order to turn back the oblivion we seem to be destined for, we must pull together the pieces to counter that who is represented within the center of the prophecy.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “What is it that we must do, then?”
Al’Kabor says to you, “I don’t know the answer to that just yet, but I do know that according to the last rune you found, the one of the keys to all of this is tied to Velious, and thus, we must find a way to get there.”
You say to Dartain, “Hmm… I think there might be a place to start. The island of New Halas was discovered with the dwarven people known to once call Velious home: the coldain dwarves. It’s possible that they might have some idea where Velious is, or how to find it.”
Dartain says to you, “Excellent thinking, adventurer. You will need to travel there, and see if you can find any information regarding the location of the lost continent, and how we might rediscover it.”
You say to Dartain, “Very well. Let me see what I can do. Farewell.”

The Deepwater Writings

You say, “Hail, Al’Kabor”
Al’Kabor says to you, “I’ve been anticipating your return. Did you find any texts of the Deepwater Knights?”
You say to Al’Kabor, “I did. I searched through the library of Paineel, and I believe I found what we were looking for.”
Al’Kabor says to you, “What were you able to discover?”
You say to Al’Kabor, “Well, I did not find any references to someone working on this rune in particular – it seems like its discovery was rather new. But it seems that a similar shape appears in a few select pieces of text for the Deepwater Knights.”

Monoliths of Theer

You say, “Hail, Dartain”
Dartain says to you, “Shh… one moment. Let me finish this passage.”
You say to Dartain, “My apologies.”
Dartain says to you, “… and finished. Welcome back. What did you find out for us?”
You say to Dartain, “Quite a bit, actually. It seems that these sigils might be representative of something he calls the “monoliths of Theer”. According to his notes, these are important to the calendar of the Shissar.”
Dartain says to you, “The calendar… hmm.”
You say to Dartain, “There’s more. It seems that the calendar was intended to be a part of the stone. It appears that Mayong has unearthed the calendar, and is attempting to find the sigils that fit on its face. He seems to have found a few, and is still in search of them.”
Dartain says to you, “I have a theory. I want to see if we can test that theory. I have one more thing for you to do, if you would.”
You say to Dartain, “Certainly. What do you need?”
Dartain says to you, “This symbol, the one with the three lines on it, I have an idea as to what it might be. I’d like you to check and see if you can confirm my theory. I’ll need you to go to the library in Paineel. Search for any tomes relating to the Deepwater Knights, and search through the texts. I have a feeling you’ll find what we’re looking for there.”
You say to Dartain, “Umm… that’s it? Is there anything else I should know?”
Dartain says to you, “Not for now. I don’t want to color your perception with my theory. Return when you find anything.”
You say to Dartain, “Very well. I’ll return when I can.”

The Mysterious Sigil

Dartain says to you, “Very well, I hope you were able to find what we were looking for.”
You say to Dartain, “I believe I have. I found a tome here that seems to describe the first rune as the Rune of Oblivion. It appeared to have something to do with the Void, and as I read, it occurred to me that it might actually represent Anashti Sul herself.”
Dartain says to you, “Really? And what brought you to that conclusion?”
You say to Dartain, “It seemed that based on our research so far, each of the runes might actually represent a being. Given that she once held close ties with Rohen Theer, and the fact that she just returned from the Void recently, I believe that this rune might indicate that she is somehow tied to the prophecy.”
Dartain says to you, “Very astute. Your logic is sound, and could very well be exactly as you say. I will continue work on this rune based on your findings. What else did you discover?”
You say to Dartain, “It seems that the second one is known as the Rune of Sundering. This one is a little more difficult to figure out who might be tied to it. It seems to point to an event rather than a being – the Shattering. Perhaps it’s representative of whoever is responsible for the destruction of Luclin?”
Dartain says to you, “Perhaps, but I think this might actually be a good clue to the nature of the rings of the prophecy. Hmm… if you don’t mind, I’d like to see that tome. It will take me a little time to go through this and figure out what significance the runes carry, and how they might pertain to one another and ultimately, to the prophecy itself.”
You say to Dartain, “There was one more thing. Lord Everling had notes on another shape – one that he seemed to think might be quite significant, but that he had little information on. I am not sure what to make of it… perhaps it’s worth looking into?”
Dartain says to you, “Let me see that. Ah, this is Shissar writing. Hmm, yes, I think I’ve seen something like this before.”
You say to Dartain, “Is that so? Where?”
Dartain says to you, “When I was researching Mayong Mistmoore’s discoveries, there were a few sigils like this one that he had notes on, and was attempting to find if there was a particular significance to. Some of these were clearly just bits of the written language of the Shissar, but others were slightly different, more ornate, seemingly more important.”
You say to Dartain, “Did you research them?”
Dartain says to you, “Only far enough to discern that I couldn’t learn more about it. There didn’t seem to be anything to cross-reference with these, unlike the other sigils, which had many appearances in history. Whatever they are, they seemed to mean something only to the Shissar themselves.”
You say to Dartain, “Are they worth looking into, then?”
Dartain says to you, “Hmm… I believe so, yes. As long as I’m attempting to look into the information you’ve provided me thus far, it might be worth seeing if there’s something here to be discovered.”
You say to Dartain, “Very well, I am ready. Where should we start?”
Dartain says to you, “I think that the one who might have the most information on these sigils would be the one who discovered them in the first place – Mayong Mistmoore himself. He has had more time to be looking for the meaning to these symbols, and might have information that we can use. It’s with him that you should begin.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “The idea of rummaging through a vampire’s belongings isn’t terribly appealing, but I’ll see what I can find.”

The Chelsith Stone Rings

Conversation 1 with The Duality

You say, “Hail, Al’Kabor”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “Greetings, adventurer.  I am pleased you have come.  We, as Norrathians, are close to a crucial point in our history, and perhaps in fact, our existence.  Only by understanding can we hope to avert what is to come.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “You speak of the Age’s End prophecy, is that right?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor\/a says to you, “Indeed.  I believe, based on my studies, that the “prophecy”, as it were, does very well point to events that will come to pass, and that may be unavoidable.  But perhaps with proper study, we can discern what is to come and even a way to avert it.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “How is it that you know so much about the prophecy?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “During the Age of Turmoil, I came across information during my travels in Kunark about the stone found by the shissar in ages past.  It was apparent to me that I had stumbled across something of significant importance when it was no less that the agents of Mayong Mistmoore himself that I found the information with.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “What happened then?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “At first, my interest was primarily driven by the idea of countering Mayong’s plans, whatever they may be.  As I looked into the information further, it was evident that what he had found was more than some nefarious plot or insidious scheme.  I knew that I needed to learn all that I could about it.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “I see.  What were you able to find out?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “Information was difficult to come by, as I wasn’t certain what it was I was looking for.  I found, though, that it was much like the proverbial iceberg – the more I learned, the more I discovered that there was to learn.  Questions led to answers, which led to more questions.  It was quite some time before I could even put a name to what I was researching.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “That sounds frustrating.”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “You might think so, but I found the feeling of discovery exhilarating.   Every step forward I took in the research was a triumph, and every step back was a new challenge.  I never felt like my endeavor was pointless.  Although I had many more adventures I went on with my companions, I worked on my research until my own death.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “So for all of your research, what did you manage to find?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “Admittedly, in spite of all of the time I invested into this, I discovered very little, as there simply wasn’t much information on the Age’s End prophecy available to me.  Mayong had hoarded the vast majority of it, and I was forced to decipher shreds of evidence hidden the tomes of Norrath’s libraries.  I did, however, make some interesting discoveries.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “What were those?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “I believe I have found the meaning of a couple of the symbols represented on the object known as the Chelsith Stone, but not necessarily their significance.  I believe the orientation of the symbols on the stone to be an important piece of the puzzle, but until recently, I had little idea what the face of the stone looked like.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “You have seen it, then?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “No, I have not.  But then, it’s not necessary that I do.  I’ve found that some notes have been made about the inscriptions on the stone, and I’ve been able to piece together my own picture of the face itself.  This will help my research immensely.  To be honest, I believe my role here will be to simply compile and piece together what has been discovered by others here, and see how they are all interconnected.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “You said you had deciphered some of the runes.  Which ones were they?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “Well, to be brief, the one I found first was the rune of the Dal Crown, which I found in the notes I discovered on the agents of Mistmoore.  I originally believed this to somehow represent Brell or the Underfoot, as it appeared to resemble the crown worn by the Duke of Below.  However, this appeared no where in any information connected to Brell Serilis, and in fact, no where in the Underfoot which Dartain was imprisoned in.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “Interesting.  What might it mean?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “I believe it more specifically points to someone who has a role to play one way or another in the Age’s End prophecy – my long time companion, Firona Vie.  It was for this reason I sought her out, and implored her to reveal herself.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “And so she did.  But how do you know that her part in this prophecy isn’t for ill?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “I don’t, until I know more about the placement of the runes themselves.  However, in order to discover that, I need to know the meaning of the runes.  This is where you can be of service.  I have a marker here with a rune symbol etched on it.  I want you to search for information, and see if we can unlock the mysteries surrounding it.”

You say to Al’Kabor, “Very well.  Where should I start searching for information?”

Al’Kabor:Al’Kabor says to you, “Given that this symbol shows up in many erudite structures of the past, I might research their tomes on Norrath, in the libraries where they live.  I studied in the libraries of Odus extensively, and was never able to find a satisfactory answer.  Bring any information you find back to me, and I will try to piece the puzzle together.  Good luck to you.”
You say to Al’Kabor, “And to you.  Farewell.”

The Hole Uncovered: History Repeats Vol. II

“Finally, the inevitable happened. Ognit channeled just a small amount of energy into the Hatch. It wasn’t much, not even enough to kill a moss snake. However this time, the Living Wall began to shudder spasmodically and took on a pale, sickly color. The earthquake that resulted was truly terrifying. Chunks of stone began falling from the ceiling and the ground itself began to be ripped apart. From the huge gashes in the earth, the three saw terrifying creatures emerge. All about them were sounds of shrieking, crying and bellowing. The noises were both exclamations of excitement for finally being freed and rage for being imprisoned for such a long time. The three began to flee the hole in terror as the creatures began to swarm around them, their ears ringing from the unholy screams. As they made haste toward the surface, they came across a figure that looked to be an Erudite. The Erudite was walking slowly and limping slightly. He was filthy, covered with dirt and soot. His skin was pallid, as one who had not stood under the glare of harsh sunlight for ages. He wore a robe that was a splotchy brownish color. It was difficult to tell if this was the robe’s original color or if it was the result of the filth that covered it. He turned quickly and upon seeing them, he spoke. “”Gnomes, and a Barbarian woman of all things! I don’t know whether I should thank you or draw the full sum of the life-force from your bodies right here and now!”” Dagda pushed her way past the two gnomes, putting herself between them and the Erudite. Facing the strange man she asked, “”Who are you?”” He folded his arms across his chest and smiled slightly. He raised an eyebrow as he spoke, “”My name is Dartain of the Dark Truth. I don’t suppose you have any idea about what you have just done? Or perhaps I should say undone, do you?”” He seemed to stare through their souls with eyes fierce yet lined with weariness. “”Your meddling has caused the Wall of Living Stone to weaken once again. Though your actions have finally allowed me to break free after being trapped for so many a year, you have also allowed many of the denizens that were imprisoned behind that wall to escape into the world again as well.”” Even in the dim light, Ognit’s face became visibly paled. Dartain continued, “”The Hatch is still unharmed and appears to be functioning as it should. I believe the wall will repair itself again in time. While the breach remains however, there will be a steady flow of creatures escaping from the underfoot. I suggest you make haste out of this place and take warning to those above, so that they may prepare themselves.”” As he finished speaking, murky shadows made their way from the floor and encircled the dirty robes the strange man wore. As he disappear from view he softly muttered, “”Finally, I am free.”” “

The Hole Uncovered: Ognit Arrested Vol. III

“Al’Kabor was utterly silent and his face expressionless. A slight twitch in the corner of his mouth was his only movement. Ognit asked, “”Al’Kabor?”” Al’Kabor raised his fist, his eyes flashing in murderous rage as he looked upon the gnome, “”Now I shall end your miserable gnomish life!”” Wind charged with electricity seemed to blow directly up from the ground itself and enveloped the crowd as the wizards hands began to glow with sheer power. People began to take a few tentative steps backward. At those words, the Erudite that was writing quickly put his book in his vest pocket and interposed himself between the gnome and Al’Kabor. The Erudite shouted, “”Stay your hand wizard! I shall take it from here!”” The wind subsided as the energy drained away harmlessly. Al’Kabor recognized the man that shouted and he smiled to himself. Ognit saw that it wasn’t a good smile. It was a smile that told him that it may have been better to have been blasted to bits. The man identified himself, “”I am Warden Lius of Erudin. I have been following these three since this catastrophe began!”” He turned to the gnome and said in a commanding voice, “”Ognit Eznertob! You are hereby under arrest for the crime of treason! You have imperiled the continent of Odus and have released unto the world a heinous criminal, the heretic of old Dartain!”” The Warden bound Ognit’s hands and feet in heavy chains. “”I doubt that there will be need for a trial. By your own admission made here this day, it is evident that you are guilty. Surely it will be ‘The Hollowing’ for you.”” Pushing the gnome roughly he commanded, “”Move along criminal!”” As Ognit was led away, Dagda was surprised to find tears falling from her face. She knew that Ognit was guilty, yet she was not sure if execution was the just course of punishment in this situation. As a follower of The Tribunal, she was torn between her notions of justice and her loyalty and vow to protect her two gnomish friends. Indeed, she would rather that it was she who was being led away. At least she may have had the strength to break free and perhaps escape. She knew that the physically weak gnome would have no such chance and given that the Erudites are the most experienced and schooled in the use of magic, she had no doubt that they would take every precaution to prevent his casting any spell. She felt truly hopeless. “