The Great Library of Palanthas

An Aesthetic shows you to a small reading room.

Stories of Ansalon from the view of Frank.

A little gully dwarf runs by and says 'Wordwrap Off 65 80.'
The gully continues 'Eyes hurt? Turn Color OFF!! (regular story dates)

Astinus says 'Enter the main library here to view only the author list.'
Astinus gently places a pamphlet on the table in front of you.
You note the spine bears the word 'Frank' scribed in brilliant yellow ink.


Author:    Frank          
Date:      Thu Nov  5 11:00:36 2015
Subject     All in a days work Part I

His Hammer slammed down! A loud clank rang broke the silence of the somber destroyed town. Glowing red embers showered over him. The Horseshoe glowing red, Frank doused the implement and water as steam his as if in angry defiance. Pulling the horseshoe out Frank relaxed for a moment and wiped the sweat and grime off his face and lifted his hammer for another swing. A Childs laughter shattered his concentration, three young boys ran by engaged in play battle. Their dirty clothing and towns sad disposition obviously unapparent to them. One kid stopped right in front of Frank and stared intently at him. Smiling at the boy Frank waved him over, "Want to give it a try young man?" The little boy with a huge grin stretching from ear to ear ran over with a look of pure glee on his face, "Would I ever!" Watching the adolescent closely observing his every move Frank took a step back and handed the blacksmiths Hammer over. The little boy raised his arm up as high as he could and started to swing down. The Hammer clamored down onto the anvil grazing the already poorly made horseshoe. Quickly sliding behind the young boy Frank placed his hand on his shoulder by his neck... "Did you enjoy that?", inquired Frank. "I sure did mister, I want to do what you do for a living, it's bad ass!", exclaimed the young man. "Now mind your language but yes I do enjoy it... say since I did you a favor maybe you could do me one as well?" Frank looked at the young man with a cold calculating look. The young man looked up at Frank with a confused stare. "It's nothing big, Just listening... If you hear anything interesting or secret just come tell me... I like information you can say, Simple enough eh?" Thinking for a second the little boy nodded, "Sure thing mister! I got to get going home though its diner time soon!" Patting the young boy on the head Frank gave him a small shove and said, "Get home to your parents young man!" With a large grin on the young man's face he ran out of the small building pausing for a second to look at a sign above it. 'The Crossing Blacksmiths' His new favorite place in the whole wide world.

Author: Frank Date: Tue Sep 12 18:17:57 2017 Subject A Lost Cause (Part I)

Frank paced his quarters feverishly deep in thought, impatiently waiting for news. Frank was well aware, the loud intentional lead-footed strides drove his aides insane - but afforded him a degree of comfort, there was something soothing in the rhythm. It had been hours since High Justice Sdresk had pulled rank and overrode his orders. The exchange of Highlord Khariif for a sergeant and a temporary cease of combat was ludicrous in Frank's opinion. The sergeant in question was Maccus Mar'Mahcphi a man of his own order the crown, a good man. Strategically the exchange made no sense and hence Frank forbade it but the High Justice and his honorable views found Frank cold and his actions deplorable. So, the exchange was to happen, done by the High Justice himself. Sdresk's reasoning wasn't far from sound, the knights we running low of food and supplies. The prolonged siege and blockades prevented any attempt of the knighthood breaking the stalemate. Then there was the promise of a Palanthian royal navy headed by High Clerist Verrochio, that was surely going to break the siege. Never an optimist and always planning for the worst, Frank had his doubts and frankly this island didn't hold much worth to the overall cause of the war, just a victim and the never ending, death-dealing machine that was the Dragonarmies. Frank had fought long and hard to just GIVE them the island and evacuate to a more defensible and strategically important location such as Caergoth, the results were once again not in his favour (Again Frank was viewed as cold and uncompassionate). A loud knock at the door of his quarters broke Franks concentration and he lost a step in his strides. Frank grumbled to himself and granted permission for his aide to enter. "My Lord High Warrior..." Frank hated the title as he himself wasn't much of a "Warrior" but the irony wasn't lost on him, "Your squire Selic has arrived and has information, he says its dire." The aide shifted uncomfortable as Frank frowned and gestured his hands impatiently, "I'll... I'll send him in my lord!" "Good man, be quick about it." Frank shook his head, he needed new aids, ones with brains. The Aide had rushed off and moments later Selic rushed into the room giving a brief but respectful salute. Selic was new to Frank's service, inducted into the knighthood by yours truly. Selic came from a long line of Knights, house Uth Marrin - old blood, the blood in which Frank himself thought to be the very problem found in the soul of the knighthood. It was the long established unyielding rules that crushed the knighthood, pulling it ever further from the glory once held in the past. Selic though, he was a good man, Frank could tell, a son of an ever so traditional knight frustrated with its outdated archaic ideology. For those reasons and because he seemed to have have a good head on his shoulders, Frank took him on as his squire. Men like this would be the new life's blood that brought the knighthood into the new age, the order of the Rose be damned. Selic was visibly distressed and huffing loudly, it was apparent he had wasted no time coming to Frank. Selic shot the aid a dark annoyed glance, appeared like he was about to reprimand the man but then stopped. Some habits never die, a son of a rose knight would never let such petty feelings be known. Sighing loudly Selic addressed Frank "My Lord..." Selic was well aware of Franks distaste for his title, "The exchange... it was an Ambush!" Selic seemed concerned at the lack of surprised on Frank's face, Frank motioned for Selic to continued. "Everything seemed to be going according to plan Sargeant Maccus was exchanged for that scum of a Highlord Khariif and as they turned to return to the safety of the city they were ambushed! I only waited around few moments more to see that Maccus and the Lord High Justice were able to escape but to my understanding they were injured. Sdresk more so than Maccus." Frank grumbled in distaste, "Fools, I told them something like this would hap-" another loud rap at his doors sounded causing Frank to stop mid-sentence. His aide may be a fool but only an idiot would interrupt a private session unless something catastrophic were to have happened. "Enter." A wounded, bloodied and pale Maccus marched into his quarters, a limp visible. "Maccus! Do you forget yourself?" Confused and then shocked at the lack of protocol Maccus quickly snapped to attention and saluted Frank, "Forgive me High Warrior I - " Maccus stopped at the sight of a smirk on Frank's face. "Protocol be damned son, it's good to see you. I am happy you survived... Would have got you sooner, it just you know didn't make sense." Maccus nodded, he had long been in Frank's service and was well aware of how decisions were made. "Say nothing of it my Lord, I understand. I do interrupt this meeting with purpose though!" Maccus waited for Frank to nod before he continued. "Lord High Clerist Verrochio has been defeated at sea, on his way here!" This time Frank was shocked "How in the bloody Abyss did the Dragonarmies get enough ships to elimante the royal navy! This is unprecedented!" Frank watched Maccus stare uncomfortably at his feel, regaining compose Frank continued with a slow cold tone, "That is not everything is it? Continue." "Well they are only rumours It is said that he commanded a skeleton crew, several hand-picked knights, he underestimated the might of the Dragonarmies." Maccus paused slightly before continuing, "His whereabouts are currently unknown, it is not believed he was captured though." Maccus stumbled to stay on his feet but then again forced himself upright and stood defiant to his injuries. "Sargeant, you've done well. Selic, model this man, he and men like him are what will drive us to victory. See him to a healer and send in my aide, it's time we were off this rock..." "My Lord?" Maccus and Selic asked in unison. "We are retreating, I will not defend this god forsaken island any longer. Selic, do you remember that man we dealt with in acquiring Khariif?" Frank knew he did as Selic frown, there were aspects of Frank's dealings that even Selic couldn't hid his emotons from. "Send word to him, his ships will be needed to ferry us and whatever refugees he can handle of this island and to Caergoth." "What about the High Justice?" Inquired Maccus. "I'll drag the stubborn mule off this island myself if I have too."

Author: Frank Date: Sun Sep 17 14:54:08 2017 Subject A Lost Cause (Part II)

Frank could barely think, the scene around him was chaos. The citizens were utterly manic, and his knights were having the worst of times quelling the panic and getting any semblance of order. Not that Frank could really reprimand these poor souls, most had already lost someone since the Dragonarmies initiated their assault on Schallsea. The sounds of combat were no longer so distant, the enemy had made quick work of the cities guard and harbour defences it seemed. Injured humans of all ages hobbled, bloodied from the streets, a black smoke was starting to fill the sky. They were razing the city, rumours of undead creatures running rampant through the streets slaying all that were misfortunate enough to be in their path. Furthermore, stories of scaled dragon-men, armoured and marching with elite military discipline, finishing off what was cast off by the undead. A loud scream and the sound of metal scraping on metal sounded, much close this time. Cursing Frank looked to his Sargent Maccus, "My good sir, I don't think we will have enough time to evacuate all of the citizens and the knights Not at this rate anyways. I regret not taking the time to have this cities guards trained better." Frank truly thought they would have had more time. "My Lord High Warrior, how could you have known? I mean... Who had really heard of this Highlord Khariif before?" Maccus stood defiant to the inevitable defeat they must face. "Well Saregant, that is neither here nor there. We need to protect these wretched souls, I have an idea but I am not sure you're going to like it." Frank started to outline his plans to Maccus, it was in every sense of the phrase, a suicide mission. "My squire Selic reports that we are facing particularly worse odds down the south-western quarter of the city. Reports of a crew of Goblins and Hobglobins slaughtering at will and making good headway towards our evacuation tunnels. I can spare only 15 knights, choose whom best suited for this mission... you know, effective but the ones without families or loved ones to return to." Maccus didn't appear shocked, a long-time campaigner alongside frank, Frank knew he expected to serve the knighthood in anyway deemed fit by his superiors and would welcome a chance for glory. "It would be my Honor High Warrior, {IEst Solarus Oth Mithas!" Frank watched Maccus depart, watching from group to group of knights, hand selecting the men appropriate for the task. Turning away, Frank set to work, He had sent this man off to die one-to-many times. "Selic! Get those refugees going, we will not have much time until the dragon army scum are upon us!" Frank commanded as he himself walked into the fray giving gentle shoves and words of encouragement to the inhabitants of the doomed city. The Kender had come through, the tunnels were in well enough repair and large enough to allow a large-scale evacuation of the city and Frank was certain the Dragonarmies were not aware of it's existence. From the tunnels, the refugees refugees and Frank's remaining forces would retreat to a hidden and reinforced beach head to be ferried across the Schallsea straights. Once again outside forces were to come to the knights' rescue, the crew of the Vanderkaum (and captures of the Highlord Khariif) would see everyone they could to safety. "Alright, it look's like we have got most of the citizens to safety, sound the horns to withdrawl the kn-" Frank stopped mid sentence, his stomach was starting to wrench, his blood grew cold. "What in the ..." looking skyward Frank's eyes widened in terror. A large black shadow slid hidden in the smoke above the city. Moments later a loud sickening road sounded from the skies, it was a dragon, scales the colour of Obsidian, slick, long and deadly. Mounted on its back a man, a man very familiar to Frank even at this distance, Highlord kharif. His hands numb frank fumbled for the lance strapped to his back. Gods if he knew that he'd ever have the chance to use his Dragonlance. Every time seemed to be moving in slow motion, the fear was gut-wrenching, paralyzing. Frank could do nothing other than watch in terror the dragon swoop in low and open its jaws. Streams of acid spewed from the dragon's maw, screams of agony and the smell of burnt flesh filled the plaza frank stood in. Suddenly the paralyzing fear started to subside but this was replaced by a more primal fear, a fear for survival. It appeared frank was not the only one, knights shoved each other aside, grown men reduced to quivery fools. Frank watched as his squire went down under the press of the knights fleeing the plaza, only half of them going in the right direction. Shoving his way through his men, frank thrust his arm down, grasping Selics wrist and pulled him to his feet, the man was bruised and bloodied already. "Get the hell out of here! Get to the tunnels" Frank gave Selic a shove towards the western end of the plaza. Selic was pale in the face and didn't want to leave his commander but wasn't someone who'd question a direct order. Frank turns just in time to see the dragon descend towards him. A knight bumped into him trying to flee and frank held him fast. More screams, more burnt flesh, Frank stood quivering not noticing for several minutes he was holding a corpse. The man had acted as a shield taking much of the acid thrown by the Dragon, not all of it as frank noticed his arm was badly burnt, he could see bone. Everything started to go black from there, Frank didn't remember much from these moments other than the pushing, the shoving, the screams and that terrible smell of burnt flesh. It wasn't until he was slumped against the tunnel walls, dust swirling around him as the knights collapsed the tunnels behind them. What the hell were they up against? ({ITo be continued...)

Author: Frank Date: Sun Oct 1 10:28:23 2017 Subject Frank the Cripple (Part I)

Frank didn't remember in the following days after the fall of Schallsea, He didn't remember how he was dragged from the tunnels and the chaos ensuing their escape. He did remember the pain, that terrible burning, searing pain. The smell, acidic yet rancid, his arm was even then for all who could see, was lost. He vaguely remembered the early days at sea, mostly the despair for not only was the infection in his arm spreading, Frank was not a man of the sea, frequently sick. Frank wished for many days the sea would take him, fold him into its churning depths and end his suffering, but that was not to be. It was the days that Frank could remember that haunted him most. His arm would need to be amputated. The healer aboard the Vanderkaum assured him of that, advising him if they didn't take the arm the infection would spread and kill Frank. Even the brooding dour Sdresk seemed to have sympathy for the dying High Warrior despite their many indifferences. 'Let the take the arm you fool!' Sdresk would bark at him, 'Even without that arm your skills at command and strategy is invaluable to the cause, to this war, Hell the knighthood!' Sdresk grasped Frank's shoulder firmly 'I will make it an official order soldier' Frank gave a sickly smile, 'You seem to forget at times of war, the only person who outranks me is the Grand Master, last I checked, you nor anyone else held that position'. Frank watched as Sdresk stormed out in anger, Frank knew he was only trying to help but in those moments Frank didn't want help, he wanted to wallow in self-pity and continue weighing if he'd be a cripple or just die from infection. Currently the later was winning. The next several days again Frank had little recollection of, for he had become delirious. The pain was almost unbearable, the whole cabin smelt of death and everyone avoided his room it seemed, except for that blasted Kender that roamed the ship, he never seemed to go away. This brings us to current day or shall I say night, it was hard to tell as Frank was below deck and the windows were covered. Frank awoke in a cold sweat Frank looked portside to the porthole of his room, the sheets covering it had come loose exposing the dark scene outside, the horizon illuminated by Solinari and occasionally lightning in the distance. Focusing on that distant horizon Frank was able to gain control of his stomach and its few contents. Suddenly lightning crashed down directly beside the ship, in front of the porthole. Light so bright pierced Frank's eyes and skull, blinded momentarily and then deafened by the thunder that always followed. His ears ringing, frank was in a state of shock, he couldn't see. . Frank started to panic, there would be no reason to live if he then too just lost his vision, there was no place in the knighthood for blind cripples. Much to Frank's relief his vision slowly started to return, colourful pixies danced in his vision until then too, they were gone and the room was once again dark. Frank was surprised to not hear anyone else crying out in the night, that bolt must have been close enough to do damage to the ship, yet no one stirred. In fact, there seem to be a slight white mist rolling about in the floor of his cabin.

Author: Frank Date: Sun Oct 1 10:41:51 2017 Subject Frank the Cripple (Part I)

Frank didn't remember in the following days after the fall of Schallsea, He didn't remember how he was dragged from the tunnels and the chaos ensuing their escape. He did remember the pain, that terrible burning, searing pain. The smell, acidic yet rancid, his arm was even then for all who could see, was lost. He vaguely remembered the early days at sea, mostly the despair for not only was the infection in his arm spreading, Frank was not a man of the sea, frequently sick. Frank wished for many days the sea would take him, fold him into its churning depths and end his suffering, but that was not to be. It was the days that Frank could remember that haunted him most. His arm would need to be amputated. The healer aboard the Vanderkaum assured him of that, advising him if they didn't take the arm the infection would spread and kill Frank. Even the brooding dour Sdresk seemed to have sympathy for the dying High Warrior despite their many indifferences. 'Let the take the arm you fool!' Sdresk would bark at him, 'Even without that arm your skills at command and strategy is invaluable to the cause, to this war, hell the knighthood!' Sdresk grasped Frank's shoulder firmly 'I will make it an official order soldier' Frank gave a sickly smile, 'You seem to forget at times of war, the only person who outranks me is the Grand Master, last I checked, you nor anyone else held that position'. Frank watched as Sdresk stormed out in anger, Frank knew he was only trying to help but in those moments Frank didn't want help, he wanted to wallow in self-pity and continue weighing if he'd be a cripple or just die from infection. Currently the later was winning. The next several days again Frank had little recollection of, for he had become delirious. The pain was almost unbearable, the whole cabin smelt of death and everyone avoided his room it seemed, except for that blasted Kender that roamed the ship, he never seemed to go away. This brings us to current day or shall I say night, it was hard to tell as Frank was below deck and the windows were covered. Frank awoke in a cold sweat, a loud rumble could be heard in the distance and the ship tilted from side to side. Frank bent over and heaved into an iron pail resting at his bedside, great a god damned storm was on it's way. Frank looked portside to the porthole of his room, the sheets covering it had come loose exposing the dark scene outside, the horizon illuminated by Solinari and occasionally lightning in the distance. Focusing on that distant horizon Frank was able to gain control of his stomach and its few contents. Suddenly lightning crashed down directly beside the ship, in front of the porthole. Light so bright pierced Frank's eyes and skull, blinded momentarily and then deafened by the thunder that always followed. His ears ringing, frank was in a state of shock, he couldn't see. Frank started to panic, there would be no reason to live if he then too just lost his vision, there was no place in the knighthood for blind cripples. Much to Frank's relief his vision slowly started to return, colourful pixies danced in his vision until then too, they were gone and the room was once again dark. Frank was surprised to not hear anyone else crying out in the night, that bolt must have been close enough to do damage to the ship, yet no one stirred. In fact, there seem to be a slight white mist rolling about in the floor of his cabin.

Author: Frank Date: Sun Oct 1 10:44:31 2017 Subject Frank the Cripple (Part II)

Frank then noticed he wasn't alone. A tall man wearing full Solamnic plate armour was staring directly at frank through the slits off his Bison head helmet, his features hidden in the darkness. A sense of calm overtook Frank and the unknown knight walked towards him, Frank struggled to sit-up and even pull away from this apparition, likely a figment of his delirium but he couldn't get away, couldn't move. The knight reached Frank's beside sans any sounds of footfalls or clanking of the armour he wore, completely silent. A gloved hand then rested upon Frank's forehead, the cold metal of the Gauntlet relaxed Frank and cooled him down as he his body had transitioned into a feverish state. Frank was somewhere else. Well Frank wasn't but his conscious was, he was floating from the heavens down towards land. Frank recognized vaguely where he was mostly from maps that he had viewed over the years, the Kharolis Mountains stretched to the east and before them the seemingly endless forest of Qualinesti. The view was awe inspiring, but he was falling faster and faster towards the ground towards the western fringe of the forest not several miles off the coast of the Sirrion in the north-western reach of the Forest. He was now at ground level, before a destroyed temple of some sort. This temple was almost hidden to the naked eye as it was covered in moss, vines and other various foliage. He was now inside the temple. It was dark, hopelessly dark. Frank floated down the hallways before a glimmer of light appeared before him, drawing closer it appeared to be a sculpted silver arm laying on a pedestal. As Frank drew closer his heart beat grew louder in his mind. It was crushing, increasing in speed. A darkness started to appear in the left corner of his vision, evil dim eyes circling in a mist. As it closed the distance between Frank and the Arm, the sound of Frank's heartbeat had become an earthquake, everything was shaking around him. With all his focus Frank reached out (at least it felt like he did as he couldn't see his body) and touched the arm. Frank was once again somewhere else, everything was once again quiet until a loud clang could be heard. This was a sound frank was familiar with, his surroundings were that of a smithy, although an ancient one. Some of the tools lining the walls were no longer used as newer techniques have been developed, yet this room didn't look ancient. Frank thought back to his days as a smith, times were simpler then. Metal crashed on metal and Frank turned and was then shocked. Before him stood an odd looking, soot covered dwarf, forging a blade. The dwarf was peculiar in the sense it looked to be a mix of human, elf and dwarf. This wasn't what shocked Frank though was that the right arm of the dwarf was a large silver arm. Not rigid and unmoving as silver ought to be but moving freely as if someone had painted his arm with silver, this was the very same arm that was in the lost temple in Qualinesti. This was Frank's second chance at life.

Author: Frank Date: Sun Oct 1 10:48:10 2017 Subject Frank the Cripple (Part III)

Frank's eyes opened slowly, it was daylight and he was back in the Vanderkaum, returned to his body. Quickly looking around the room, the lonesome knight was gone. Sitting on a bench in the far end of the cabin sat the Kender plucking away at an instrument to an old sailor's tune. 'You Kender, get the healer. Tell him... Tell him it's time." Frank pointed to the door calmly. 'Who Vasher? Did you know that he hasn't been on the ship much longer than me? In fact let me tell you about how I joined! It all started when this evil looking dwarf was running from me in the streets of Schallsea, you see he was running because -' The Kender stopped as Frank interrupted, his calm now gone from his face replaced with a sturn annoyed frown. 'The Healer now!' Pouting the Kender patted at a large pouch at his side and complained 'Some people are so rude, Sallah. To think I was going to tell him one of my best tales! How ungrateful!' The Kender ran from the room yelling out for Vasher, 'Vasher! This stupid knight below wants you!' His voice grew distant, 'Did I ever tell you how bad that room spelled? His arm is dead you know?' Resting back into his pillows Frank once again smiled, this silver arm must be found.

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