Category Archives: Rune of Ethernere

Beyond the Rune

Notes by Lord Rikantus Everling
The greatest prisons are those we make for ourselves. My prison begins with my love of my daughters. My beloved daughters have been slaughtered by the accursed guardians that once cared for them. These six were once bound to my family by their curse, but the stench of betrayal is strong within this manor and such villainy soon sets into all who dwell within. Betrayal became necessary to acquire the wondrous artifacts of my family and betrayal will tear us apart and piece us back together in the shape of blasphemy.

My daughters have been cut and my sentries have fallen to blades. In this bloodbath I am imprisoned, never able to leave. No door could be opened, no window broken down. How such magic could be wielded by Pelleas is beyond my understanding. But there I found myself, alone in a house of death. But I am an Everling and the gift of the occult is my trade. I can find a way to save my daughters because I have studied with the House of Varsoon and have heard the name of Ethernere.

Ethernere is said to be a place where the dead go before they are allowed into the eternal halls of the pantheons. It is not a plane as we know planes to be. This is a dimension, a realm that exists all around us, in this space and not. Here in Ethernere is where I knew I could find my daughters and return them to the land of the living. I raced to gather my research notes taken from my time with Varsoon. These notes will craft my path and allow me to rescue my beloved daughters.

Key among Varsoon’s research was the ancient rune. It had no name, for it existed long before names. It was an ancient whisper from times unknown, but it is what he believes to be the first key to Ethernere. At the time, his goals in Ethernere were not mine, but it was a path to the unknown, the stock of my trade. We studied notes and studied the rune, a peculiar glyph rules by what looked like two intersecting triangles. Eventually, this time of research ended in failure, or so I thought. Reports soon told me that Varsoon lied and he had breached the barricades of Ethernere.

That was then and now I am placed within the blood soaked castle. It was at this time that I knew my notes could be deciphered and a way to Ethernere could be made. If I could reach such a place then I could retrieve the souls of my daughters before they moved on to eternal realms. Having done my studying, I realized I needed to piece my daughters back together. Employing my art in flesh constructs, I went about sewing together the parts of my beloved daughters. The creations were not as accurate as I had hoped, but would be sufficient as vessels until I could acquire new ones.

Performing the final steps of the arcane ritual, I began to realize that I am about to enter the realm between death’s door and the eternal gates. But I was wrong. The research undergone so very long ago within the Keep of Immortality was flawed. It was either flawed or Lord Varsoon had fed me lies on purpose. I believed the latter at first, but soon realized it would be near impossible to corrupt every one of my notes. Perhaps the destination was not the one we believed it to be. Perhaps is no more, as I soon learn.

Through powerful rituals I have opened a gateway to the unknown, a gateway to oblivion. I set foot upon the surface of a rock hurtling through a maelstrom of astronomical anomalies. I see the emptiness around me filled with flotsam and jetsam made of other hunks of rock. All is being sucked towards a blinding center as if we were in a universal whirlpool. The rocky moons about me seem lifeless, but the one I am atop is different. A tower rises from this lifeless rock. Could this be Ethernere and could this be the mythical Deathtoll Belltower? It was not.

The tower was crackling with arcane forces. The sound created boomed across the silence of this world, feeling as though it could destroy the ears of a god. Massive streams of energy burst out of the top of the tower and arced off into the void. I noticed something that nearly was lost among the many wonders. This place is close to the center of the vortex universe, but somehow fighting the speed of other bodies around it. I wondered if the arcs of light were anchoring it down in some fashion, anchoring it to what?

Having no where to go, I ventured forth towards the tower. The walk was much longer than I had estimated. The rocky terrain made the journey far more difficult as well. Luckily, I happened upon a stairwell. The brickwork was amazing and the minerals used unknown. I decided that the stairwell was just as safe as the tower and being so close, I descended. I may have chosen wrong, the descent was long, longer than the trek to the tower would have been. Suddenly, it ended and I found myself within a massive cavern.

Inside the titanic cavern I could see another tower far off across the uneven landscape. The air was brilliant and blue. Dazzling lights danced about this air as if they were schools of fish. I could see swirling vortices of arcane origins bursting forth from high on the cavern walls. Suddenly, I heard a rumbling sound. I hid. Peeking out from behind my rocky refuge I spotted a large lumbering beast. This beast was like a massive burly minotaur with eyes of red that pierced the darkness. I turned to sneak back up the stairwell, but there was no stairwell!

Having no where to retreat to, I was forced to trudge onward. I darted from shadow to shadow, outcropping to outcropping. I managed to elude the horned behemoths and draw closer to the tower, the only place I could see as a possible release to this mystery. Looking at the tower I noticed something very eerie etched onto its crown, the rune that brought me here! There atop this tower in a realm unknown was the same symbol that Varsoon had chased. It was this rune that brought us here, or did it call?

Varsoon and I traded knowledge gathered from history and across Norrath. We believed this to be a passage to Ethernere, but was it truly? Neither of us could say for sure unless we ever made it here, and here I am. Did Varsoon also find this place? The ethereal chain that bound me to Norrath tugged tight. I must find my answers soon or be forced to return empty handed, never seeing my beloved daughters again. I must enter the tower and find my answers if they do exist. Enter I did.

(The final page contains two sketches of two runes. They appear as follows: 1. The Rune of Ethernere – There is an image of two triangles turned upon each other and intersecting to create a diamond at the center. 2. The Rune of Sunder – There is an image of a swirling line such as a whirlpool would create when viewed overhead or a spiraled serpent. The Rune of Sunder has a hurried note scribbled in blood over it. “Look to the stone of the Shissar.”)

The Book of Sunder by Vhalen-Dev

You say, “Hail, The Book of Sunder”

The Book of Sunder says to you, “As has been stated, the magical manuscript security protocol requires that all information is withheld until the proper password is given.”

You say to the Book of Sunder, “Till Yonder”

The Book of Sunder says to you, “Oh boy! You’re a smart one, aren’t you? Looks can be deceiving, eh? Now, I suppose you wish to hear about the Rune of Sunder. It’s my specialty, you know? What do you wish of me?

You say to the Book of Sunder, “Please tell me about the Rune of Sunder.”

The Book of Sunder says, “The Rune of Sunder is a representation of an event that is to take place in the Norrathian year of 5595 B.T. The event will see the destruction of the moon called Luclin that orbits the planet Norrath. This is a unique event foretold in the doomsday calender of the ancient race known as the shissar.

In the Norrathian year, 3000 B.T., the shissar completed a calender comprised of runes and symbols extracted from the planar realms. These runes took order upon a massive stone calender that was carved into the shissar city of Chelsith.

The shissar referred to the calender as a doomsday calender since it held the date of the death of the shissar race and destruction of Norrath. Among the many runes of this calendar was the rune of Sunder, the foreteller of the death of the moon.

A great arcane plague extinguished the shissar race, as foretold. In the wake of this genocide the iksar rose in their place, destroying much of the records that told of the doomsday calender and the location of Chelsith.

The Rune of Sunder would not be encountered by the Norrathians until the arrival of the prophetic elf ruler, Queen Elizerain in the Age of Blood. She dreamed of the great spiral and kept its secret hidden from all but those that shared her dreams. Everling research has uncovered a dragon to be one of these trusted Norrathians.

In the Norrathian year of 5102 B.T., Queen Elizerain crosses the Gray Wastes into the afterlife. Her many prophecies are kept safe in hidden and unorthodox vaults. Among these was the prophecy of Luclin’s destruction and the Rune of Sunder. it is believed her secrets are still kept close to the throne of the Koada’Dal.

In the Norrathian year 5190 B.T., the House of Everling purchases an idol from Valdoartus Varsoon. This trinket proves to be cursed, but contains another rune upon it that is linked with the Rune of Sunder. The rune is designated the Rune of Ethernere. The idol is designated the Idol of Mor’Tael.

In the Norrathian year, 5330 B.T., Lord Rikantus Everling is cursed by the idol of Mor’Tael. He is slowly divided and with each facet of himself, a bit more freedom is lost. He intensifies his studies of the Rune of Ethernere, believing it will show him a way to the Gray Wastes of Ethernere where he might rescue the souls of his departed daughters.

Lord Rikantus Everling discovers that the Rune of Ethernere is not the passage to the Gray Wastes, but rather, a prophecy of another unique event of the shissar doomsday calender. Before he can complete his validation of this theory, he is consumed by the curse of the Idol of Mor’Tael. Before this is complete, he renamed the Rune of Ethernere to Rune of Oblivion.

Research of the Rune of Sunder and the Rune of Oblivion lead towards the research of the doomsday calendar. With all Everlings subjugated, all studies have been postponed.

There you are now! That is more than any academy big wig or ancient lich can tell you. Consider yourself informed… and being informed is half the battle!