The Great Library of Palanthas

An Aesthetic shows you to a small reading room.

Stories of Ansalon from the view of Zurani.

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 concise treatise on the table in front of you.
You note the spine bears the word 'Zurani' scribed in deep red ink.


Author:    Zurani         
Date:      Thu May 27 09:23:43 2010
Subject     The Beginnings of Hatred

Zurani sits in the crow's nest as he spots the telltale signs of a ship
on the horizon, the black speck with its mast and sails.

"Cap'n! Looks like we gots sumting out dere."

"Aye. Can you get us there?"

In response, the Ergothian just smiles, showing a glimmer from the ruby in
his gold tooth. He then whispers to himself, a prayer to his goddess, and
the ship's sails fill with wind and begin to take them closer to the speck
on the horizon.

As the ships sails on toward its target the cleric leans back in the crow's
nest and contemplates his life thus far:

The first ten years of his life went by uneventful as he and his mother
sailed with a merchant ship, making their living as part of her crew. It was
there that his mother had told him of the sea goddess Zeboim. Though his
mother seemed happy, there was always something dark about her. It was when
he was eleven his mother caught the sweating sickness and it was then that
she told him of his father; a drunken Solamnic Knight that had his way with
her. From that point, Solamnic Knights, while having no real impression on
him before then, had become his eternal enemies. Though it was the act that
had created him, it had also hurt his mother and he swore he would avenge
her. Although, it seemed to give her some solace, she died soon after, and
Zurani continued as part of the crew he had known since childhood.

As the years moved forward, he found love in the trinkets he could steal and
in his goddess, Zeboim. As this love grew, his hatred for anything Solamnic
grew as well. It was when he had truly gained favor with his goddess when he
came across the man that had ruined his mother's life. When he had
discovered the man, he left the ship and hunted him, watching his every
move. He decided that he would kill the man, and waited till the man was in
a tavern to approach him. There he drew the jewel encrusted dagger his
mother gave to him, and with a short prayer of thanks to Rann, he plunged
the dagger deep into the man's chest.

On his attempt to flee, the dead man's friends caught him and had him
brought to the dungeons. He spent several months in the dungeons waiting for
the day of his execution. With only a month till he was to hang, two men
were thrown into his cell with him. The men were clearly sailors, and from
the way they talked the cleric decided that they must be pirates. Three
nights after the men were thrown into the cell with him, a group of men
broke into the dungeons and broke the other men out. The other men, having
come to know the cleric decided to bring them to their ship. He was
subsequently enrolled into the crew of the pirate ship that he now crews
on.

The man in the crow's nest now peers through a telescopic lens, and then
grins a glittering smile at the captain as he looks down from the lens.

"Well, lad?"

"Aye. She flies de kingfisha." 

Author:    Zurani         
Date:      Fri Sep 26 18:36:02 2014
Subject     An Escape

The reaving lasted for many years and brought fortune to the ship; but just like all tides, it turned. It took an ambush set by the Knights of Solamnia to sink the pirate ship he was on, and Zurani again found himself in a Solamnic prison. The Knights has transported him inland, far from the sea. Looking out of his cell's window, all he can is the lands of Solamnia. The only though in the sailor's head is escaping to the sea. After a few weeks in this prison, one of his meals arrives with a note under the hard chunk of bread. 'Enjoy the bread. Com to the Lame Pony' The pirate breaks the bread open to find a stone from the sea, carved to look like a turtle shell. A grin splits his face, and he whispers a prayer of thanks to Rann. He grasps the stone in his hand, making a fist. When the guard asks for his plate, he refuses until the guard opens the cell to beat him. As soon as the cell is opened, Zurani leaps up, the stone in his left hand; he grabs the guard's throat with his right and whispers another prayer. The guard begins to convulse, and in short order, sea water begins to flow out of his nose and mouth. The cleric sets him to the ground gently to minimize noise, and sets to work swapping his tattered clothes for the guards Solamnic armor. As soon as he has switched clothing, he closes and locks the cell. He moves quickly through the empty, partially lit halls. He proceeds to the stables, and in the dark of night, slips out of the fort and makes his way to a small village. He stops outside an inn named, 'The Lame Pony". Having put the armor into the saddle bags, he walks into the inn with simple cleric robes on, unsure of what he might find.

Author: Zurani Date: Thu Oct 23 20:56:12 2014 Subject Back to the Sea

He smells the ocean before he sees it. He salty air causes him to raise his nose in the air and take a deep breath. A smile crosses his face as he exhales, the sun catching he ruby in one of many gold teeth. He releases the reins of his horse, and runs his hands over his freshly cut hair, no more than stubble; then through the long matted black beard. The horse continues to plod along, the reins resting on its neck, before Zurani picks them up again. He pulls on the reins, stopping the animal at the top of a rise. The smile on his face turns to a grin as he looks down at the circular city of Palanthas, and out on the bay, filled with ships. The pirate digs his heels into the animal's sides and rides down toward thee city. As he approaches the southern gate, he slows the horse and pulls his cloak around himself. The pirate makes his way through the gate and towards the docks, via side roads to avoid attention. He keeps his hood pulled low as he rides. He has a thought as he passes a stable, and turns the horse into the stable. Moments later, he walks out with a pouch full of gold. He then crosses the short distance to the docks and begins looking for a ship to take him for under the eyes of the Knights, maybe to Sanction.

Author: Zurani Date: Fri Oct 24 14:39:03 2014 Subject Securing Passage

Zurani approaches a handless door in an alcove of a dockside warehouse. He depresses a panel next to the door and it slides away. He reaches his hands into the void, and fishes around till he finds a cord of rope, which he tugs on. The door opens and the Ergothian steps inside. He approaches a man standing behind a counter inside the warehouse. 'Hello, brother, ' the man behind the counter states, 'How can I help you?' The cleric steps up to and leans on the counter, 'I be need'n a ship dat be going into dangerous waters.' The man looks at the Ergothian curiously, studying him, and then looks to a large ledger, 'There is a quick ship heading to New Sea, and the captain is known for running through pirated areas and coming out without any trouble. He charges a large chunk of gold to travel, as he is on the quickest and can avoid said pirates.' 'Aye, ' Zurani says with a grin, showing several gold teeth, 'that be de one. What be her name?' 'The Osprey. She is docked towards the end of the docks.' the man replied. 'I tank you fer de information, ' the man states, placing several gold pieces on the couter. He steps away from the counter and walks out the door and makes his way down the docks to the Osprey. He steps up to a man that looks like a captain and puts on his best Solamnic accent, 'Captain, I am in need of making a voyage to New Sea with haste. I am told you have the fastest ship. If you allow me on board, I can pay with gold as well as give you favorable winds.' The captain looks over the Ergothian, pausing on the breastplate he took from the slain knight, 'Aye, I suppose having Habakkuk's blessing on this voyage may be helpful. Welcome, aboard.' The pirate grins, and steps aboard the Osprey.

Author: Zurani Date: Tue Jun 16 20:41:34 2015 Subject Answered Prayers 1/2

The captain had definitely lived up to his reputation and made the trip to New Sea a quick one. He even evaded a number of pirate ships, but this could not stand. That is why the cleric is now on the deck, under the stars. The Ergothian kneels on the hardwood, looking up at the stars, his lips moving in silent prayer. The skeleton crew working around him seem glad to have him, thinking they had a cleric of Habbakuk to guide them along their passage. They would run him through without a thought if they know the deity he prayed to was Rann. As his lips move, he lifts the Solamnic breastplate he had taken from the guard he killed making his escape, and tosses it overboard. He watches the coil of rope tied to it, slither over the edge until it tries to jerk out of his hands. He remains kneeling and continues to pray as he strains against the rope. After about an hour, he hauls the breastplate back up, finishing his prayer. He wraps it in a cloak, and quickly makes his way back to his cabin. After closing and locking the door, he opens his cloak to look at the armor with a grin. The previously polished armor is now scorched and covered in a light dusting of barnacles. Many of the symbols of the Knights of Solamnia seem to have been etched out as well. He places the breastplate into his trunk and lays down for the nights sleep, a wide grin on his face. It is day break when he is awoken by the commotion on deck. Zurani looks out the window to see a ship closing on them, with a black hull and black sails. Another grin crosses the clerics face. He quickly throws open his chest, dumping its contents on the floor. He grabs he clerical robes he had buried at the bottom, and slowly slips them on with ceremony. Once he has the robes on, he puts the breastplate on over them. As he finishes up, he hears the captains voice, "Bring me the cleric. We will need Habbakuks to get us out of this mess." The Ergothian does not wait for the messenger, and with the sea stone shaped like a turtle shell in his left hand, he opens his cabin door. The messenger is only a few steps from the door as it opens, and the look on his face says he recognizes the clerics garb. With a broad smile, Zurani passes the man, seemingly frozen in place. Due to the commotion on deck, no one else manages to recognize the robes. The captains voice is loud and clear from the aft castle, "Cleric, we need your prayers!" The pirate climbs the stairs of the castle before speaking, "But she as already answered my prayers." The captain turns towards the pirate from looking at the oncoming ship, confused, "What are you-" the man stops dead as he sees the scorched armor and the seafoam and red clerical robes. He reaches for his mace, but the Ergothian moves quicker, kicking the captain in the chest. As the he is sent back to hit his head on the bannister, the first mate throws himself, screaming, at the cleric. Zurani grabs the man by the throat, and with a quick prayer, the mans shouts turn to gargling as sea water begins to erupt from his nose and mouth. The cleric lets go of the man, letting him hit the deck hard.

Author: Zurani Date: Tue Jun 16 20:44:46 2015 Subject Answered Prayers 2/2

He then turns to the crew who are now watching, "Dees pirates be boardin dis ship. If de sails be struck now, I be inclined to speak fer ya." The crew waists no time and begins bringing down the sails. The cleric reaches down and takes the first mates boarding axe, then approaches the captain who is no coming around. With the captains eyes fluttering, the Ergothian takes his mace and hangs it on his belt, then removes his wide brimmed hat and places it on his own head. He smiles a golden smile at the other man as he lifts him up and hangs his head over the bannister. Zurani leans in and whispers in the others ear, "Dis be de answer to me prayers," he says pointing to the black ship, "You be de price." With this said, he pulls his jewel encrusted dagger from his belt and draws it along the captains neck and lets the blood pour down the side of the ship and into the sea, a moment before pushing the body in. He then leaps up and takes a seat with his feet hanging over the water, and watches the approaching ship with a smile.

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jun 17 20:34:04 2015 Subject An Odd Boarding (1/2)

Mazerith eyes the incoming ship as Tempest continues to quickly close ground. In moments they would be in range for the planks, and once more Mazerith would lead the crew over the rail to some other crews death. Mazerith takes a slow breath as he feels the two ships bump together, and is all but over the rail as the thud of the planks hits the rail of the awaiting target. Though to the surprise of every member of his crew the prey they found looked nothing like they wished this fight. Zurani remains in the aft, dangling his legs over the sea. He takes a deep breath of his own as the ships begin to bump, reminding him of the number of times he had been on the other ship ready to put this crew to the sword. He smiles a golden smile as he hops up on the bannister and begins walking along it towards where the boarding party would be coming over. Zurani easily makes his way, balancing with practiced skill, his sea-foam and red clerical robes moving in the wind. He uses a rope to slide down with ease, to land before the confused boarding party, "De ship be yours, cap'n." As he speaks, the Ergothian removes his newly acquired wide brim hat and makes an exaggerated bow. Mazerith quickly tries to cover his surprise at the scene before him. He had encountered crews who wished not to fight, but these men had just seen something more. The slight smattering of blood on the stranger now bowing before him lead the captain to believe this may be true. Mazerith says, "The ship was always mine Boy." Aye, the pirate says, facing the entire boarding crew, but focusing his gaze on Mazerith, dat do be true." Zurani gives the pirate captain a large grin full of gold, the sun shining off the one ruby in his tooth. He replaces the hat upon his head. "I do wish to be apart of yer crew. An dis do be my gift, so I do s'pose it always be yers." Mazerith lets the look of confusion pass his face, turning to his first mate. "Kill them all," he states and turns his gaze back to the odd ergothian standing before him. "How is it you came to be in command of this crew boy? I dont see this lot following you." He motions to the crew of the boarded vessel now scurrying about the ship in a vain attempt to cheat their death. The Ergothian looks to the crew being killed all around him and shrugs, Zurani did say he would put in a word, but maybe that was a lie. "I must confess, I kilt de cap'n whilst yer ship be clos'n." The cleric smiles and points to the aft of the ship, "De cap'n be a sacrifice fer you to be arrive'n. My goddess do get what she be want'n." The Ergothian grins again at the captain, and as he does part of the ship's crew jumps at his legs, "Please, you said you would speak up for us." Zurani grins and simply unhooks the mace from his belt and swings, landing the steel bands across the mans temple, dropping him immediately. Mazerith feels the blood whip from the ergothians mace as the skull of the unknown man crushes beneath its weight. "Effective boy, quite effective. A follower of the goddess you say?" He takes a moment to really take in the boys appearance. Giving the young man a quizzical look at the armor over the robe. "Took a gamble we would leave you alive unlike the rest of this lot you did." Mazerith nods as his crew begins to assemble back on the deck. Everyone had been disposed of and blood stained the deck all over. "Take stock of the cargos this prize carries. Get it on Tempest and send this hull to Zeboim." Turning to the ergothian once more. "Why is your life worth the food you will consume on my ship boy?"

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jun 17 20:39:35 2015 Subject An Odd Boarding (2/2)

Zurani nods his head as the captain speaks on the risk to his life, but then a smile crosses his face, "It did be a risk," the cleric tosses a small sea stone carved to look like a turtle share in the air and catches it, "I ad fait dat Rann would not lead me to 'arm." Zurani holds his hands to his side as if the what he is about to say is a simple truth, "Plus, I'd av drug bote of dese ships to de abyss wit me." The pirate grins wryly at the captain, "As fer me wert. I do be able to speed de ship along, or slow de utters down. Do be up to you." Mazerith cant help but chuckle at the mans matter of fact statement. "How would you have any say in the speed a ship can possess. That is told by the crew that runs her." The Captain takes stock of the scene around them. The men had made short work of the holds and the quartermaster now sat taking stock of what they had gained. "Aye, dis be true," Zurani says, his hands spread conceding the point, "But wit me on de crew, I can give you de wind you want. De goddess do seem to favor me." The pirate smiles at the captain as he replaces his mace at his belt. Mazerith produces a pipe from his breast pocket and packs it with san thalos herb. Give me wind you say?" he says absently watching the final barrels go over the railing of the Tempest. "A finger wiggler of some kind you must be then?" he asks more matter of factly then as a question. "And if I decide to see if your mouth speaks the truth what stops you from recreating this little situation here aboard my deck?" Zurani smiles mischievously at the man, "To be fair, it do be the Maelstrom dat give you wind. I do be de instrument." He then becomes quite serious, for the first time since the boarding party arrived, An dere be no reason fer de cap'n to worry. It be de Maelstrom dat asked fer dis man's soul, so as long as Rann doan ask fer you, you be safe." Zurani places his hand over his heart as if swearing an oath, and the grin is back on his face. Mazerith chuckles again this time extending his hand. "Mazerith is the name boy, and by some string of luck the goddess seems to be telling me today isnt your day to die." He nods to a few crew who have stayed gathered around the pair. "Bring him on board and feed him. Once hes done bring him to my cabin. It seems we may have much to talk over." He puffs a few puffs from his pipe and nods more to himself than anyone around them. The Goddess was giving him the tools to finally make Tempest the force should be. Zurani smiles a winning smile at his captain, "I do be hearing dis word as well. My name be Zurani." The pirate again removes his wide brimmed hat, and makes another exaggerated bow to the man, "It be me pleasure to be part of de crew." He stands from the bow and smiles at the rest of the crew as he follows them onboard the ship.

Author: Zurani Date: Tue Jun 23 23:49:37 2015 Subject Proof is Forthcoming

The Ergothian follows his guide into the bowels of the ship. As he walks, he takes in the ship. He runs his hands along the a timbers, admiring the craftsmanship. He smells the air, smiling at the faint smoke smell in the air, no doubt from the ship they left burning. Wearing a golden smile, the cleric walks into the galley. He steps into the room with a confident swagger, as he were truly part of the crew. He looks over the men and women that are below deck eating. Most gaze up at him with quizzical looks on their faces, as he walks to the cook to collect his bowl of stew. Everet get him to his table before dismissing himself with orders to remain in the galley till the captain would speak with him. The cleric makes an exaggerated bow towards the man as he walks out of the room, earning him more looks from the crew. As he sits and eats, he listens to the conversations around him, he comes to learn his presence on the ship was abnormal. Aparently, the captain very rarely took on passengers, but he was not a passenger. The pirate grins, showing the ruby embedded in one of his gold teeth. A few minutes go by before one of the crew approaches him, questioning, "So, word is you can control the weather. You some kind of ziard from the Tower?" The cleric frowns at the man, "I do be no witch from de Towa," he states, seeming almost offended. "An I be de one dat requests, Rann be de one dat control de weader. I do be but a umble servant," he says, putting on a pious stance. "I see," says the man with a wily grin, "Care to prove it?" The Ergothian looks to the man as if he were an imbecile, "De goddess do no need to prove erself," the man stops and tilts his head, along with the rest as they hear a loud cry, "SAILS TO THE EAST," follwed shortly by, "MULTIPLE SAILS!" "It do appear She be wanting to show you dat proof," the priest says with a sickly grin on his face. The crew clears the galley and quickly makes their way to the deck, Zurani to hear the captains words, "Get the men on deck, Everet, the blood hasnt finished running for the Goddess tonight."

Author: Zurani Date: Thu Jun 25 16:27:50 2015 Subject The Cleric's Proof (part 1)

Mazerith strains his eyes to see through the smoke that had begun to slightly subside as the burned ship had all but disappeared into the depth of Zeboims sea. There sure as shit were two ships coming into view, ghostly shells on the horizon. Calling to man in the crows nest Mazerith asks a simple question, "What sigil do they fly boy?" The return call down wasnt a pleasant one, "Dragon Army!" Zurani takes a look towards where the look-out is pointing, and grins at the two masts on the horizon. He walks over to the captain as he gets the call that the ships were Dragon Army, his grin nearly splits his face. "De Dragon Army? Interest'n. Are dey a regular sight out ere?" the Ergothian says, unconsciously he reaches into the pouch at his side and retrieves a smooth sea stones carved to look like a turtle shell. Mazerith holds a hand up to Everet whose hand had slid to his sword hilt as the Ergothian snuck up on the pair. "They have been come more present as of late. Nothing more then ships carrying intel back and forth, but some do transport troops." He looks Zurani up and down a moment, "It looks as though you will be showing us your worth sooner than later boy, The Queen loses her ships to the Goddess of Storms Tonight." Mazerith roars the last part loud enough for the awaiting crew now on deck to hear. The cleric's grin turns to something of sickly pleasure, "I do tink it be time fer dat." He smiles again to the captain, then pulls a small dagger from the small of his back, it's hilt inlaid with gold and covered in red and sea foam gems. Zurani whispers a very short prayer to himself before placing the edge of the blade on the tip of his finger and pressing enough to draw blood. Zurani walks over to railing at the edge of the ship, seemingly talking to himself. He reaches over the edge, and continues to whisper to himself. He watches as his blood drips from his finger into the sea, his lips moving all the while. Mazerith lets the slight panic that had begun to form in his stomach wash away quickly as certainty replaced it. This man was indeed a man with the ability that he thought. "DROP THE SAIL!!!" came the call from the captain, "Ready them incase this all gets too dicey lads," Mazerith knew facing two ships would be near suicide, but with this fellow here on their side for the moment the odds had shifted back in their favor. Everet moves quickly to the captain's side whispering low, "Mazerith .... what if this was the game all along? How can we be sure he hasn't planned to hang us on the mast as a present for the Queen's worms?" Zurani listens intently to what the captain is saying as well as the first mate's doubts. He shakes his head, with a grin on his face, but he nevers stops his prayer. The Ergothian watches the blood drops hit the waves, when suddenly a fog begins to rise from the sea, surrounding the Tempest. It begins pushing itself out further, expanding rapidly. As the fog expands, the skies begin to grow dark and the previously calm water begins to swell up and down. "We tank you Rann, goddess an rula o' da sea. Dis do be jus a taste. We do plan to give you more before dis day be done," the cleric says, his voice rising as he speaks, and as if to respond, a boom of thunder sounds followed a bolt of lightning that splits the sky. Zurani looks back to the captain, zeal in his eyes and an evil grin on his lips. Zurani approaches the captain, taking his time, seeming to revel in the fact that the sea had just turned into a mess for him, his goddess hearing his prayer, "It do be yer turn, cap'n."

Author: Zurani Date: Thu Jun 25 16:30:48 2015 Subject The Cleric's Proof (part 2)

Mazerith flashes a wry smile at his first mate, a youthful spring in his step as he bounds up the steps to his cabin returning with a bow and a quiver slung over his shoulder. "Ready the men Everet, If they continue to move at us lead them over the Rail. Zurani, you are with me." The captain quickly climbs the ropes to the first crossmember of the mizzen mast, following the rigging to the second where he adjusts his quiver. Feeling the boat roll under his feet, perfect balance keeping the man stable as Mazerith watches the two ships over the fog coming together in the distance. Zurani grins as he follows the captain, not bothering to gather up a bow. He walks without any urgency wearing a look of a zealot that knows his goddess is behind him. He climbs up the rigging behind the captain, not losing a step and deftly moving from one hold to another. He reaches the first crossmember and stands, seemingly without a care for falling. "We did make a promise, you an I. We do be obliged to send er de Dragon Army fools dat tink de sea belong to dem." Mazerith nods down to the cleric not letting that smile leave his lips. Mazerith felt more alive than he had in any number of years past. "It seems the Goddess favores you more than most boy, I haven't seen her respond like this since she finally answered my pray to send me you." He lets out a laugh that was perhaps loud enough for the Dragon Army swine to hear if the wind blew right. The Ergothian chuckles to himself, "Then it do be a prayer dat bote o' us ad answered." Zurani watches the two ships as they float towards the fog, both lowering their sails to slow their approach. He can barely make out the men on board, but they are seem close enough to be talking back and forth. By the time they reach the edge of the fog, one has dropped sails completely while the other slowly enters the fog. "It do look like dey be send'n one into scout de fog." Zurani grins wryly, knowing that this would mean he could send his goddess the souls he had promised. Mazerith nods again not taking his eyes off where the ship had entered the fog in front of them. "The Goddess will get her payment tonight it seems Zurani." Mazerith continues to wait, perched on the mizzen. He slowly pulls an arrow from his quiver and knocks it, drawing the bow back and taking in a breath. Aiming down into the fog he holds, another few seconds and they should be in range. Slowly, Mazerith whispers a prayer to his Goddess and exhales letting the arrow loose hearing the surprise from the ship below as one of their men goes limp. "They are in armor, you watch your back when this begins and make your strikes true." Zurani nods emphatically at his captain, clearly excited at the prospect of being on the other ship's deck, "Aye. I do believe she be gett'n er payment." He watches as Mazerith's arrow flies into the fog, and grins as it strikes true. "You ave no need to be worry'n bout me, it be you da one to watch yer back. She do tell me dat she as future plans fer you an dis ship. Dat do be why I am ere," Zurani says ominously as he makes his way out towards the end of the crossmember. Mazerith motions down the the crew massed on the deck drawing Everets eye, knowing the other ship should be in range for the plank at any time. "The Captain's head gets the biggest steak when we return to Port O Call?" he asks drawing another arrow and letting it fly, this time more to gauge the distance then to kill. Listening intently as the arrow strikes something wooden quickly. Standing Mazerith yells "THE PLANKS LADS!!!!!! The Queen has sent her minions to dine at her daughter's table tonight!"

Author: Zurani Date: Thu Jun 25 21:41:36 2015 Subject The Zealot Has His Fun

Zurani walks out to the end of the crossmember, tucking his seastone into the pouch at his side. He waits till the captain calls for his men to begin boarding the Dragonarmy ship, then leaps from the crossmember towards the other ship. As he flies through the air, his sea foam and green robes flapping around him, he enjoys the short amount of calm before the storm. He lands hard in the rigging of the other ship, and grabs his wide brimmed hat before it falls to the deck, placing it back on his head. He looks down to see the crew of the Tempest flooding onto the deck of the other ship. He grins as he rolls out of the ropes to land gracefully on the aft castle of the ship. He pulls the sea stone from its pouch, and the ironwood mace, with steel bands and cap at the end. He looks up towards the closest Dragonarmy sailor, an evil smile crossing his face before he advances on him. Before the sailor could get his cutlass clear of its sheath, Zurani brings the mace across his face sending him to the ground. He follows up with an unnecessary blow to the mans head, sending blood spraying into his face. The Ergothian turns to look down at the deck and sees a line of archers, preparing to send a volley into the mass of his crew. He reaches out with his other hand, holding the seastone, and motions as if dragging something down. As he completes the motion, a large wave reaches over the bannister and drags the archers over the side, pulling them below the swells. He grins again, showing the gold in his mouth, as he turns to face another sailor charging him with a spear. He dodges the wicked looking head and extends his own mace out, sending the man flying off his feet. The human manages to draw his cutlass and begins slashing at the cleric, who responds in kind, smashing the mans hand causing him to drop the sword. He then brings the mace down, several times on the mans chest, till he begins coughing up blood. He then brings it down hard on his face, causing the man to go limp. Zurani moves quickly stepping out of the way of another slash from a hobgoblin behind him. He then blocks the following blow with his mace, but nearly loses his footing due to the creature's strength. He pushes the other combatants cruel looking sword back and with haste, brings his mace down to the goblinoids knee, sending howling to the ground. Dropping his mace to the deck of the castle, he pulls the boarding axe from his belt and begins chopping at the creatures neck, nearly severing the head. Just as he is about to finish the job, an arrow finds its mark, burying itself deep in his shoulder, causing him to drop the axe and fall to his knees. Zurani fumbles for his mace, picking it up as he slowly rises to to face the man willing to shoot someone in the back. As he turns, the archer stumbles back, seeing the clerics face. Blood splattered on his face and dripping from his matted beard, he advances slowly on the archer attempting to nock another arrow. His eyes look feral as he roars at the bowman, bringing his mace up slowly. The sailor manages to get off another arrow, but this one hits the clerics breastplate, shattering the shaft. The Ergothian brings his mace down hard on the archers head, crushing the mans leather helmet and head. Clearly having lost control of himself in the battle, he continues bringing the mace up and down. He finally stops himself to turn to the captain of the ship, a menacing grin on his face, showing the ruby in one of his many gold teeth. Blood dripping down his face, making him look like some sort of demon. He now advances on the captain of the Dragonarmy ship, who turns to escape this zealot, only to find his escape blocked by the captain of the Tempest. Zurani calls to the other captains back, "It do be yer turn, capn." The cleric of Zeboim advances on the captain, a prayer of thanks on his lips.

Author: Zurani Date: Tue Jul 7 00:16:18 2015 Subject Taking the Ship (1/2)

Mazerith watches as the Dragon Army Captain turns to flee from the now quite blood soaked Ergothian, following his eyes he realizes he has also been flanked. "Your men have lost this day my good fellow," Mazerith says calmly not dropping his bow from the ready. "Tell the remaining men to drop their arms and perhaps not all of you will be sent to meet your bitch of a queen." The captain freezes, trapped between the pair. He eyes Mazerith coldly, his hands clenching into fists. "I know you will never leave us alive Mazerith.... Whats the saying here on Tempest?" The man seems to contemplate for a moment before continuing, "Send them to Zeboim?"(x "If you do be will'n, I do be prepared to send you to er," Zurani says with a sickening grin as he takes several steps towards the captain, hefting his mace, preparing a swing that would send the man's soul to his goddess. His left hand clenches around the sea stone, "It do be yer choice." Mazerith eyes his new friend closely, taking in the fact he seemed genuinely happy with the thought of ending this mans life. Mazerith knew it was a thing the Goddess commanded now and again, but he never reveled in it quite like this cleric did. But the captain was glad he had a man like him at his side. "Kill them all," Mazerith hollers over his shoulder to his men now surrounding the remaining soldiers. He grabs the weathered soldier before him by the hair, forcing him to watch as his men close in around the last hold outs. He kicks the mans knees out from under him. Mazerith holds the Dragon Army man there to watch as his men are finished. Tempest had lost a good few, but the day was theirs. "Their lives are Zeboims now, you have sent them into a hell you will soon share." Mazerith replaces the arrow in his quiver and slings his bow over his shoulder. He turns to Zurani, "a prayer to the Goddess boy, but make it quick. Who knows how long that other ship will float waiting for this lot." Zurani listens to the captain as he speaks. The pirates grin grows to split his face when he receives the command to send the Dragon Armys captain to his goddess. He hooks the mace onto his belt by the leather thong connected to the handle, then pulls out a dagger, the handle encrusted with gems. He takes a step towards the man with the dagger, then stops dead. Zurani tilts his head as if listening to something, when he stops the captain begins to speak, "You will-," he says getting cut of by a roar from the cleric, "Ow dare you speak when de goddess speak, shut yer mout." He again tilts his head slightly, listening again. Zurani frowns a moment, but it is replaced quickly with a smile, "De Maelstrom do want you alive. At de least fer now." He sheathes his dagger and looks up to his captain, r"It do be Zeboim's werd." Mazerith chuckles a jovial chuckle that almost seemed out of place for the situation. She be a fickle mistress, lad." He nods to Zurani in unheard agreement before turning to the crew, silently counting them. "Do we send such a prize to Zeboim boys? Or would She want her kept as a reminder to those who wish to medal in our affairs?" He turns an eye to Zurani oddly before Everet looking for a sense of the man's thoughts. Zurani seems to mull the idea over a moment, then cocks his head as if listening, "I say take de ship as a prize," he then looks out towards the west as, seeming to look through the fog he had conjured, then back to the captain, "I tink it do be a good idea." He then looks down to the other captain, who just a moment before had been defiant, but now looks to the deck of the ship avoiding his gaze. "De Dragon Army do be a problem, and dis ship do be wert takin."

Author: Zurani Date: Tue Jul 7 00:21:49 2015 Subject Taking the Ship (2/2)

Mazerith nods again in agreement following the mans gaze out into nothing. He turns back to the crew who erupt with their own agreement. "Plus it makes it easier to take everything she holds with us. I fear we do not have the time to empty her completely." Mazerith again chuckles oddly, as if he knew his crew that would only further their agreement on having to split ranks to crew two ships. Rounding on his heels Mazerith finds that Everet had joined the group near the defeated captain. "The trick becomes where do we hide her.....and us till the heat dies down?" Zurani nods emphatically to his captain, "It do be wert find'n a place, but Rann do show us de way if it be what she wants." The cleric smiles a warm smile this time, and begins to wipe his face off, more blood spilling from his beard, most of it staying, dried and caked to his face. "If you do be okay wit it," he says to his captain, almost excited, "I can make dis captain no longer, tell us what de plans de Dragon Army ave fer de sea." Again, a sickly grin crosses face as Zurani speak, glancing down to see if the other captain is looking, only to discover the man nearly crumpled to the deck. Mazerith nods to the Ergothian. "The Goddess does seem to favor you lad, Take the command here, do what you can to get us some distance from that other ship and we shall see what this man has to say." He turns to the crew quickly shouting orders, "Half of you stay here, The rest get Tempest ready to sale. Everet you are with me."{ Trying to not look at his first mates displeasure with the order passed down by the captain Mazerith takes Zurani by the arm and leads him to the rail by the planks. "Find out what that man knows Lad, this has put us in a bloody storm with the Queens worms. It may be our only way out of this bloody sea alive." Zurani grins at his captain, showing golden teeth with a ruby imbedded into one. Just before he speaks, and thunderclap sounds with a bolt of lightning arcing across the sky. "Dat be a pleasure, cap'n," he says, his attention now into the fog where the other ship had been, "Dis man be da one to tell me what he knows, and Rann say she show us a safe place fer now." Zurani then turns to the crew that had not crossed back over to the Tempest, "Make er ready, gents," he then turns to the captain with a smile, "I do appreciate de opportunity, cap'n. Zeboim do smile on us dis day." Mazerith clasps Zurani on the shoulder. "May Zeboim guide you until we are safe lad." As he crosses the plank the men begin to separate the two ships, "Put your back into it boys, another fight with those bastards and we all sleep in the depth of Zeboims embrace." ***************************************************************************- The hobgoblin captain stands on the aft castle of his ship, watching the other ship under his command slip into the fog that had seemed to spring up from nowhere. He is sure he saw a ship there before, but could not be certain. He peers intently into the fog now, waiting for the all clear from the other ship. The only noise he hears is that of screams of men fighting and dying. He hesitates at the bridge, considering whether to sail into the fog blind. He looks down to his men, many of whom are now spooked. The screams die off, then the fog begins to disperse, showing nothing where he was sure there should have been two ships. He looks to his first mate, fear playing across his mates face, "It do be Zeboim, she dragged them to the deep." In response, the captain snarls and heaves his man over board, "And you can join them."

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jul 22 01:53:43 2015 Subject Safe Have, For Some (1/2)

With a whispered prayer from the Ergothian, the wind picks up, filling both ships sails but doing nothing to disperse the conjured fog around them. As they move, the captured ship ahead of the Tempest, the fog follows until they are out of sight of the other Dragonarmy ship. As the fog disperses and the cerlic sets his course, he hands the wheel over to another of the skeleton crew left on the captured ship. He roughly grabs the ship's previous captain by the collar and drags him to the stairs down to the main deck. He throws the Dragonarmy captain down the stairs with a command, "Tie im to de mast." Two of the crew follow the command with willing grins on their face, as Zurani makes his way down the stairs, taking his time. He walks over to the mast as the two are finishing up the knots to hold the man in place. The cleric opens his mouth as if to say something, but closes it and cocks his head to listen to a voice that no other can hear. He listens to the unheard voice for a moment, then nods, "Yer wish do be my command," he replies to nothing. The defunct captain watches the odd Ergothian nervously, not sure whether the man is insane or he is truly speaking with the sea goddess. He shivers slightly as the cleric's eyes fall on him, but the man puts on a look of defiance as Zurani speaks, "It do appear dat Rann be givin you de chance to go back to er mutter's army." The cleric gives him a placating smile from under his flat, widebrimmed hat, then turns to the crew, "Rig de ship to keel aul de good cap'n." He looks back to the man tied to the mast who's look of defiance has shriveled, "It do be yer choice. You can tell me bout de Dragonarmy ships on Newsea, or you can meet de Maelstrom in a painful manna." The Ergothian lets the defeated captain consider his options while he assists the crew in setting up a pulley towards the aft of the ship, and running a rope under the ship from the bow and up through the pulley. He takes control of the helm as they sail along the shore. "Drop de sails," he calls out, and the crew gets to work taking the sails out of the wind. Zurani spins the wheel quickly to the right causing the ship to lurch and lean, seeming to send it towards the shore. At the last moment, he brings the helm to center and squeezes the ship down a narrow passage and into a hidden cove. With a grin that shows golden teeth, he hands over the helm and points to a spot in the cove, "Let go de anchor dere." The crewman nods as Zurani makes his way down the stairs, checking behind him to make sure the Tempest had followed. He approaches the tied up captain and without a word begins untying him. He then ties the man's wrists together, ignoring his restored look of defiance. He drags the man to the bow of the ship and ties the waiting rope to the man's ankles. Finally, he stands and looks the defeated captain in the eyes, "It do be yer choice, cap'n."

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jul 22 01:54:45 2015 Subject Safe Have, For Some (2/2)

The tied man watches as the crew releases the anchor, then grabs hold of the other end of the rope, feeling the line go tight around his ankles, "Okay, I will tell you!" Zurani grins as he speaks, "Good. What was yer mission? An who sent you?" "We were dropping off some mage that looked dead. We were then supposed to meet the other ships at Crossing. Our orders came from the Black Wing Highlord." The cleric tilts his head again, listening to the voice no one else can hear, then nods, "We tank you fer de infermation." He pulls his dagger, and as the man cringes, expecting it to be buried in his chest, Zurani cuts the ropes at the man's wrist. With another grin that causes the sun to glint off the ruby in one of his gold teeth, he whispers in the captain's ear, "Be tankful, Rann do invite you to dine with er tonight." He gently pushes the man's chest, causing him to lose his balance. As the captive swings his arms attempting to regain balance, Zurani turns to his crew with a smile that is returned, "Aul away, boys."

Author: Zurani Date: Sun Aug 23 15:41:48 2015 Subject Loose Lips Sink Ships, pt. 1

Sitting in his office it was hard to not think on the day that had transpired. Mazerith knew that his men were now in more danger than they had ever been, but perhaps what they had the balls to begin would carry over in this land. Mazerith knew all too well how the Dragon Armies had marched unchallenged for what seemed like ages. It was from this thought the cry of "Drop the sails and LOWER the anchor," came from the deck. He stood from behind his desk and ran his hands through his hair taking a deep breath before moving to the door and stepping threw it back into the sun. It seemed the fog had lifted and he now found himself in a rather perfect rock outcrop which shielded the two vessels quite well from the sea as well as land. Zurani takes a look around the small cove that he had lead the two ships into. There was only the one way in, that required them to maneuver sharply. And nothing could be seen of the ships masts. He smiles slightly, content with the fact his goddess had delivered them from the other's ship, and allowed them to take this one as a prize. He tilts his head as if listening to a voice no one else could hear, then nods his head in consensus. "We tank you fer de infermation," he says to the man tied up and balanced on the end of the bow. Zurani pulls out his jewel encrusted dagger from its sheath. grins broadly, showing his golden teeth, at the man as he squirms for fear of the blade getting buried in his chest. Instead of the killing the man, he gives him a placating grin, the ruby in his tooth catching the sun. He then deftly slashes the blade across the defeated captain's bindings, freeing his hands. The man smiles at the pirate with gratitude, but Zurani merely leans in to whisper, "Be tankful, Rann do invite you to dine wit er tonight." He taps on the man's chest, causing him to lose balance. As the captive attempts to regain his balance, the Ergothian turns around and bellows, "Aul away, boys!" Mazerith moves down the stairs to the deck where his men had seemed to forget their duties of lashing sales to watch the Dragon Army vessels deck where a roar of laughter and merriment had erupted. The spectacle that he was greeted with both frightened as well as pleased the old captain. Approaching the rail just in time to see the Dragon Swine hauled over the bow and into the sea. Mazerith took a moment to cheer along with his men on Tempest. The Goddess had marked the man for death he knew, but this drew them even further down the rabbit hole. "Bring the ships together and have the men there come aboard Tempest immediately." Zurani smiles and moves quickly over to the line of men hauling on the rope run through a pulley at the aft and down underneath the keel. He steps up between two of the crew and begins hauling with the crew. They move quickly, taking a short haul on the rope, before resetting and pulling again. It does not take long at the rate they are moving, and soon the sound of something emerging from the water can be heard. Another moment later and the Dragonarmy captain's body reaches up to the pulley. Hanging by his feet, the majority of his clothing is nearly ripped off and his face is near unrecognizable, the barnacles from the bottom of the ship having done their damage. Zurani ties off the rope to a cleat as the boat from the Tempest arrives.

Author: Zurani Date: Sun Aug 23 15:44:51 2015 Subject Loose Lips Sink Ships, pt. 2

Mazerith shakes his head in amazement as the crowd on both ships explodes in cheers once more as the dismembered body is tied off as a display. The cleric had won the men over quite quickly, something not many aboard his ship had ever done. Making his way back up the stairs to the helm he leaned over the rail looking down on the main deck. His men had brought the rope across to you and the other half of the men who crewed with him. Mazerith ran through his next steps carefully. He knew the men would not be happy with what he was about to say, but maybe with this new mans support they would avoid mutiny. The two ships thunked together and were tied off as men began to move from one ship to another. Some coming aboard Tempest, others going across to see the now nearly flayed ex Captain of Her majesty's Fleet. The men greeted one another and Mazerith could tell some were counting to see who had been lost in the skirmish. They had lost quite a few in the battle aboard the ship they were now tied off with. Men that would need to be replaced in the coming days. Catching Zurani's eye, Mazerith waves him up to join him at the helm as the men finally begin to gather on Tempest's Deck. Zurani helps the crew as they haul the Tempest in towards them, a golden grin for the spectacle that had been created by the keel hauling of the captive. He looks across the deck towards the Tempest, trying to spot the captain as the ship approached. As he begins to walk towards the Tempest and takes the jolt from the two colliding, in stride. He spots the captain at the helm as he crosses over to the black hulled ship. Zurani nods as the captain flags him up, then makes his way up to the aftcastle. "Dis do seem to be de best place. No to fah from Port O Call." Mazerith claps the man on the shoulder nodding to him meeting his ruby toothed grin in kind. "It do seem that you came to us at a time we needed you most my friend. I thank you for your service to a crew you do not even know." He turns and looks out over his men, finally getting a count. They were fourteen lighter than when they had begun this day. Mazerith turns back to Zurani releasing his shoulder finally. "I do wish to hear everything about what you got from that man hanging there," the Captain says motioning to the dead captive, "but we have some business to attend to first." The Ergothian raises his eyebrow when the captain finishes, "What do be de bisness you speak, cap'n?" he says facing Mazerith. Zurani tilts his head slightly, seeming to listen to something in his head, then looks back to the captain, "As fer what de cap'n ad to say, it was no much." He looks out to the other ship's bow and grins a tooth, golden smile at the sight of the keel hauled sailor. Mazerith nods to the cleric returning the smile. "I hope something useful came from his mouth before you returned him to the true Queen, Zurani." He eyes the man slightly, fairly certain he wouldn't let such a prize go with out making sure he had everything from him. "As far as the business at hand, we need to tell these men it is best they do na' go ashore. I can tell you with certainty, most of them have already spent this day's earnings on grog and women in their own minds," the captain turns from Zurani and looks out over the crew assembled below him on the deck. "These men get stir crazy fast when there is gold in their pockets." Mazerith takes a deep breath before turning to meet your gaze once more. Zurani looks at the crew as well, seeming to ponder something, "Dat cap'n said de Dragonarmy be sail'n fer Crossing. I tink dey plan to close off Newsea." The cleric removes his wide, flat brimmed hat and runs his hand over his bare scalp. Pr"I tink it do be best to get outta Newsea, which be a good reason to keep de crew aboard. Perhaps de crew will undastand." The pirate then replaces his hat on his head and grins at the captain.

Author: Zurani Date: Sun Aug 23 15:48:41 2015 Subject Loose Lips Sink Ships, pt. 3

Mazerith nods absently to Zurani again looking out over his crew. Everet was making his way through the men speaking to them in groups or one at a time. The captain knew he was already garnering votes for the decision that would come. Mazerith also knew the man was very well liked amongst the men. That was a matter for later, now was about doing what was needed to preserve them all. Slamming his hand down on the rail to get the men's attention Mazerith begins to speak. "Today Zeboim has delivered us from an altercation that could have sent us all to her embrace. Today we lived to fight another day. Today we were given the chance to continue to line our pockets. Our lives are being threatened by this Army that marches unmatched. If there is only one side our pockets will grow thin and our prizes will become scarce. Our new crewmen has found the Dragon Army moves to close the exit of New Sea to us. If we become trapped even the Goddess will be hard pressed to protect us. What I am about to offer you lads is not favorable to you, this I know. But what I offer you is a way to live to come back and perhaps reclaim our home." Mazerith looks to the cleric hoping he will throw his agreement into this opinion. Zurani listens to his captain as he speaks to the crew, nodding his head in agreement. As the captain pauses, Zurani takes the opportunity to speak up quickly, "It do appear dat dis be de best method. Too many people off de ship mean dat it'll take to long to get back, an de Dragonarmies may close de exit." As he speaks, the Ergothian points out towards the west, the points to the south, "De army be just across de strait, preparin' to come take de Port. Gettin' outta de Newsea means sacrifice, boys." Zurani finishes off with a sympathetic tone, and a placating gesture. Mazerith does his best to cover the grin that springs to his lips as the crew's newest member so seamlessly falls inline with him. Turning his attention back to the crew he continues, "What I suggest is this. I take a small group ashore to gather the supplies we need and perhaps find a few bodies to replace those friends who rest with Zeboim tonight. The remainder of you will stay here and strip that dragon army vessel of everything that isn't nailed down." motioning to the vessel tied to the Tempest Mazerith's tone grows very cold, "Mark my words men, if we are not out of New Sea by this time tomorrow, we all mine as well sail for Sanction and go ashore." The unsettled murmur that arose amongst the men on deck was enough to have the Captain call the vote, which was easily won in his favor. Pointing to two men Mazerith kept the conversation moving forward "You two, you and Everet are with me. The rest of you get to making sure everything is ready to set sail. We must be able to move fast and silent. Supplies must be tallied so we know how far we can stretch if need be. We shall Sail for Ergoth once we make way, so prepare yourself boys . We are not out of the woods yet." Mazerith flashes a smile at you with the mention of the man's homeland. Zurani grins at the mention of Ergoth, genuine pleasure on his face. He then turns to the captain, "I do tink it would be nice to see Ergoth again." He glances to the crew who is now beginning to break up into groups and talking about the captain's orders, "Do you tink dat we be able to replace dose dat we lost? I imagine de city be in a panic wit de armies just across from dem." The cleric cocks his head, listening again, then turns south and looks out across the sea at something out of sight.

Author: Zurani Date: Sun Aug 23 15:51:21 2015 Subject Loose Lips Sink Ships, pt. 4

Mazerith again clasps the cleric on the shoulder. "Thank you for coming to us when you did boy. You should see home once more before we go where I plan with the thought I have." His smile spreads wide now. "Don't think for a moment the Goddess doesn't speak to me also, but Id assume she's told you that." turns and barks orders down to the men. Most seemed to follow him on some blind sense that his way would always work, it seemed odd to Mazerith that they believed that. He did however notice a few glares from those who did not like being stuck on the boat while a few went ashore. Mazerith could only hope that the Goddess was correct in knowing how this new member of Tempest stood with his peers on land in Ergoth. They would need to resupply there at the latest or things would get hard on the decks of the Tempest. Zurani spots the few glares that the captain receives, then looks back to him. "Dese men will no doubt preciate dis when dey see de navy to de stern." He then grins again, as he runs his hand through his beard, "It as been some time since I been to Ergoth, but we must get outta de Newsea, an dat do require us gettin' on de way. I be ready when you are cap'n." Zurani gives the captain another smile and a nod as he looks over the two ships anchored and those staying preparing to strip the Dragonarmy ship. Nodding to the man in agreement Mazerith lets himself muse over the situation a moment. He knew there was fair chance they would see another fight before leaving new sea. He knew a new First mate would be chosen upon their return. But what he knew most was the fact for once since the Ship was berthed near Palanthas, Tempest had a shot to make a real name for herself. Mazerith replies only, "I'll need just a few moments lad make sure the other two get gold and make sure a boat is ready to head to shore," before bounding off towards his office moving much more agile than a man of his years should.

Author: Zurani Date: Sun Aug 30 14:38:37 2015 Subject Floating in the Abyss

Zurani departs the captains presence to prepare for the trip into Port O' Call, walking down the steps of the aft castle. He makes his way over to the captured Dragonarmy ship, acknowledging the men as they approach him about the keel hauling. Those that approach him are ecstatic about the events of the day. Finally, he is able to break away from the crew and head to the bow of the captured ship. Upon arriving at the bow, the clerics mouth begins to move in silent prayer as he slowly removes his scarred Solamnic breastplate, letting it fall to the deck. He then removes the belt at his waist, letting it fall to the wood planks, the weapons and gear thudding on the timber. He then removes his boots and hat, placing them on top of his gear. Zurani steps up to the bow wearing only his seafoam and red clerical robes, and dives into the water. He prepares himself for the splash of the sea, but it does not come. The Ergothian finds himself floating deep beneath the ocean, the pressure around him making him feel as though he were being squeezed by a giant hand. In the darkness he can see a creature not far off. Without swimming, he finds himself uncomfortably close to a five headed dragon. Instinctively, Zurani reaches for his holy symbol, only to realize he did not have it. In the dragons hand is an obsidian blade that it raises high above its heads. As the blade comes down to cleave the cleric in two, a dragon turtle appears from nowhere to snatch it away, flipping the blade to the priest. As he grabs it, he hears the call, "MAN OVERBOARD!" Zurani opens his eyes to find himself floating face down in the cove. He turns over to see the crew clamoring to prepare lines to throw out to him, but he waves them off and swims to the ship to get on his way to Port O' Call. He climbs up the side of the ship, and retrieves his gear, replacing where it goes on his person. When he gets to the breastplate he looks at it a moment, then brings it across to the Tempest and places it in his trunk.

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jan 27 21:23:09 2016 Subject Looking for a Fight, pt. 1

Mazerith walks along the road with Zurani. Everet and a few other crewmen deemed able to go about gathering needed supplies to make the trip from New Sea to Ergoth. The sun shone bright above the group as they made haste down the road. It struck Mazerith as odd that not another soul walked the road on such a day. They had passed no one and even as they approached the entrance to Port o Call he could see not a soul stir. Mazerith did his best to take in everything as they approached the gate. Guards seemed to be on duty in double. Stopping his forward motion he turned to face the party. "It seems something is amiss Lads, I am not sure if you all have noticed but it seems everyone has pulled back into the city and the men at the gate seem more numerous than I remember them being. Something has gone on in our absence." Turning back around he silently wonders if they should just make way and try another town. Zurani keeps stride with the captain as they travel down the road, glancing back to the rest of the crew from time to time. His black robes, trimmed in seafoam and red, catch the air unhindered by the absence of of his usual armor. Though he did not wear his breastplate, he does carry his mace at his hip, and the pouch that carries the smooth rock carved to look like a sea turtle. Zurani grins at the captain, the ruby in one of his many gold teeth glittering off the sun, "Perhaps it do be fer de reason de Dragonarmy ship ad planned to be at Cross'n." Instinctively, the priest reaches into the pouch at his belt and pulls out the seastone, and runs his thumb over some of the barnacles attached to it, "Peraps, de army do be in de city?" Mazerith nods slowly not taking his eyes from the gate of Port o Call. "The question becomes do we tempt fate and approach or do we make haste back to the ship and get as far off as we can before stopping for supplies?" He considered his question a moment before adding, "Our holdings are much stronger here in way of getting supplies and men to go with us." Zurani nods to the man, "We do be ere. Let us tempt de fates...de Maelstrom do be at our side." The Ergothian caresses the rock in his hand before nodding again, "It do be to get de supplies now." He then takes a few steps more towards the gate, not waiting for the others to take the first step. Mazerith watches as Everet eyes the Cleric, but makes no remake himself. Considering the fact this man had not sent him down the wrong path yet Mazerith falls into step beside Zurani dropping his voice low. "If things do go badly here, do NOT worry about the others. Make sure to cover my ass and I will make sure to cover yours. The others with us are of much less value and if need be the goddess can have them." He trots ahead and speaks in hushed tones with one of the Guards outside the gate. Seemingly satisfied and maybe a bit shocked Mazerith turns from the guard and meets the rest of the group before the gates. "It seems that Crossing was attacked by some evil force. They used an army of undead by the rumors, controlled under the Dragon Army Banner. Security and watches has been beefed up here incase they intend to come here next. We need to be in and out quickly, before any such thing happens." Zurani grins again, keeping his eyes on the guards at the gates, "Dat do be de plan." He then stands aside slightly as the captain speaks with the guards, r"So, de ship dat be our prize mus ave been on de way to support de move o' de army cross de straight. We do be eeros." He chuckles to himself at the contradiction, then smiles, "Let's be bout de business den."

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jan 27 21:28:29 2016 Subject Looking for a Fight, pt. 2

Mazerith lets a laugh escape his concerned demeanor. "Yes mi'boy I do say that we could call ourselves that. Though from the sounds of it not many made it out alive over there." He turned to the crew members and hands one of them a rather large sack of coins. "Spare no expense in getting the things that we need. Find us two dozen able men and pay them half upfront with the promise to pay again in kind once their feet are abore tempest. We make way for Ergoth as soon as you are done." Mazerith turning back to Zurani and Everet he continues, "We must make sure that this town survives in our absence so we will make sure they have funds enough to bolster the town guard and make sure they have what they need. I also need a few things from my room here before we go." Zurani shrugs his shoulder at the mention of making sure the city survives any siege that may be coming, "Opefully, de Dragonarmies do be satisfied wit killing de udder side o' de sea. Eider way, it probably do be best dat we do no mention de next port we be head'n to. Dey no doubt ave spies in de city." The priest's hand falls to the pommel of his mace, a small smile on his face, "Peraps we will find one or two." Mazerith nods to the cleric in agreement and eyes the crewmen sternly. "Make sure to keep it under your hat where we are going to. Just find us men willing to sail, and men with experience. Now go, we will meet back on the deck." Watching as the three men scamper off into Port o Call he can't help but say a small prayer to Zeboim that they are successful in bring back what they needed. Moving forward himself he enters through the gates and into an all but deserted town. It seemed that everyone had taken to the indoors with the news of the happenings in Crossing. "Fools" he thought, if an attack would come they wouldn't even be outside before they Dragon Army worms engulfed them. Taking a turn down the second street they came to Mazerith made his way to the manor he had taken up residence in while in town. "Everet, with me. You stand guard here until we come out." Zurani nods as the captain gives the order to the other crewmen, and watches as they run off to complete the task set to them. He then follows the captain through the city and to the manor where he was given his orders. "Aye, cap'n," he states, then watches as the two disappear into the manor, before turning to look around the area, making sure there were no street toughs looking for what would look like an easy target. Zurani pulls the mace from the loop holding it to his belt, gripping it tightly, a slight smile on his face. Mazerith ducks through the door and quickly ascends the stairs to the second level. Entering into a small office he grabs some documents from the desk and carefully tucks them into the pocket of his black coat. Clicking a button on the desk a secret drawer opens and he removes a small box covered in magical runes. Oddly enough it growled slightly to his touch. Sliding that into his pocket also he moves from the room to his bedroom where he tosses a few articles of clothing into a backpack. Everet did his best to follow Mazerith around the house as he gathered this and that, having to jump out of the way more than once as to not be trampled by the Captain. Finally Mazerith came to a stop at the top of the stairs once more taking mental note that he had everything that he needed. Turning to Everet he hefted a sigh. "You know you are not leaving this place, Everet. I know you knew it when we left and yet you came. You haven't tried to run, I am sure you are aware that I can't let you live.

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jan 27 21:30:35 2016 Subject Looking for a Fight, pt. 3

Zurani hefts the mace, and lets the small iron cap and band that make up its head fall into his hand. "You better be prepared to use that, sir," a relatively well dressed merchant says, indicating the priest's mace, "The whole black wing of the Dragonarmies is just on the other side of the strait, and if you give any credence to rumors, they already have their spies inside the city." The Ergothian raises an eyebrow at the man, with a frown on his face, "I do no be a knight," he growls at the man, then he asks in an even tone, "If I do give credence to dese rumas, where be de ones to spout dem?" The merchant takes a slight step back at the man's response, eyeing the weapon in his hand, "If it is rumors you are after, friend, then you best head to the Torn Sail down at the docks." Zurani gives the man a golden grin and an exaggerated bow, "I tank you fer de infermation, mate." The merchant makes a slightly disturbed look at the Ergothian, then hustles down the street in fear the man may turn the mace on him. Mazerith watches as Everets hand moves to the hilt of his sword, but seems to just rest there not drawing or moving himself forward. "I have served alongside you since the day we first unfurled the sails, Mazerith. I know the man you are, I have seen you do what it takes to keep this crew together. By the gods I have helped you to that end the entire way. For you to just replace me with some half pint boy with not even half the years on Zeboims seas is more than an insult. I wanted to see if you actually had the stones to kill me yourself or if perhaps you were going to make your new dog do it." The flash of rage that passed Everets eyes was almost enough to make Mazerith lunge right there, but he held himself a moment longer. "You know it's what's best for the crew, Everet, and was I able to believe you would step down and not try and bolster support when my back was turned I would keep you on the crew. You are far too bloody hard headed for that." Mazerith lunges forward not even letting his last words fall on the man's ears. Grabbing him by the shirt he yanks him sideways forcing Everet to topple down the stairs and onto the threshold of the entry door. Skipping steps as he descended Mazerith was on the bewildered man almost before he hit the bottom plunging a dagger, retrieved from his belt, into Everets chest right in front of Zurani who stood just outside. Standing and pulling the dagger from Everets chest he stood a moment and watched as the life drained from his once closest friends eyes. The blood began to pool on the floor around him. It almost made the old captain sad, but he knew it was the path Zeboim wanted. He knew she had called for this man's soul and he was the one who was to give it to her. Dragging the man inside Mazerith exited the building and closed the door. "Treacherous those steps can be, simply treacherous mi' boy." Sliding the dagger back into his belt he watched the man for a reaction. A grin slowly creeps across Zurani's face as the action unfolds, the grip on his mace tightening and loosening as if he wanted to join in, but he knew that Rann wanted the captain, the man's friend, to send his soul to her. He frowns slightly when it is all done and Mazerith shuts the door, "It do a pity dat de man will not to be sent to er in body as well." Zurani then shrugs it off, and the grin again replaces the frown, "Dere be rumors dat de Dragonarmies do ave spies in de city. Best we 'ead to de tavern, De Torn Sail. If'n you plan to ave dis city safer fer de people." He then loops the mace on his belt again, awaiting the captain's response.

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jan 27 21:32:55 2016 Subject Looking for a Fight, pt. 4

Mazerith nods to Zurani as a bit of a pained look crosses his face at the mention of Everet not being returned to the goddess by way of the sea. "I will have someone come and return him to her tonight when there is less chance someone will see a body being moved. He deserves that..." He trails off a moment before letting the second part of the clerics decree set in. "Spies for the Worms already here you say? I do think that we should make sure they know this is not a place for them." Giving a look around to make sure no one had been close enough to see that murder of Everet. Mazerith nods more to himself than anything satisfied that there would be bodies to pile up over this. "If we can put another thorn in their plans here I say we do it. And if we can lessen their numbers by even one we have done our service to these people." Zurani gives a captain a sickly grin, "Den let us find dese spies an end dere machinations." He turns and heads away from the manor, towards the docks and The Torn Sail. He walks down the road, following the captain, a swagger in his step as is usual. As they approach the docks, the silence of the city seems to lift, as many people clamor to find spots on ships that are soon to depart. The harbor, however, is far less filled than it should be with the ships being allowed in few and far between. "I tink dey would no let de Tempest in," Zurani says with a knowing smile on his face. Mazerith nods in agreement with Zurani, "It seems fear has gripped this place tightly. The rats flee when they should take up arms and defend what they have built here." His heart sinks a moment wondering if they would ever see Port O Call the way they had built her again. "Even if we did enter the port we would be swarmed by those wanting to get out of here before the the dark Knights turn their attention here. We do not need that headache." Mazerith pulls the hood of his cloak up over his head and motions to the sign showing the Torn Sail. The door was open and people came and went from the tavern though there was no merriment as there normally would be. No music coming from within, no laughter, just the scared citizens of this town doing what they could to get away or ready themselves for what sat across the straight. Zurani nods his own agreement as he watches the people scampering about trying to figure out what to do. "It do be de life o' de land dwella." He then looks to the tavern the captain indicated, and moves to enter building. As he does, he removes the flat, wide-brimmed hat from his recently shaved head and runs a hand through his matted beard. He takes a look around the room full, yet hushed room. Zurani then makes his way to the bar and sits down, raising his hand to the barkeep to get his attention. Mazerith watches Zurani until he enters the bar and then follows. To many in Port o Call knew him by face, but Mazerith was nearly sure that none would know his soon to be first mate. He would let him take the reigns of this little hunt, maybe get a sense of Zurani. Zeboim knew he had proven himself more than useful thus far. Entering through the door, Mazerith found a seat at one of the few empty tables and caught the attention of the serving girl, instructing her to bring him a mug of grog. Sitting at the bar, Zurani gives the barkeep a disarming smile, the gold in his mouth still showing. "What can I get you?" the portly man asks the Ergothian. "I tink I will 'ave dat bottle o' rum back dere," the priest says, pointing to a seemingly unmarked bottle on the top shelf. The man turns around and grabs the the bottle, finding much more coin on the bar than the bottle is worth. The man frowns setting the bottle down, "Got something else you need," he says eyeing the coin further. Zurani responds, loud enough for those near him to hear, "I 'ear dere be rumas of spies in de city. Do this be true?"

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jan 27 21:36:46 2016 Subject Looking for a Fight, pt. 5

Mazerith tries not to let his eyes bulge out of his head from under his hood. Was the boy really this brazen? And why was Mazerith excited at the fact that he was? Chuckling softly he began to scan the room around them for any man or women who seemed to be disarmed by the boys remark. Mazerith listened also for whose conversations may have ended short. This kind of start was going to lead them to a fight and Mazerith wanted more blood today. The man behind the bar raises an eyebrow to the stranger, but responds anyway, "There are indeed such rumors going around, but whether they are true or not...I cannot confirm. I would certainly hope not." The pirate studies the man, as he responds, then retreats down the bar to another patron. "A shame," he says aloud, making it clear enough for those around him to hear. Zurani then uncorks the bottle of rum, and takes a long pole, some of it leaking down his beard to drip on the bar. Zurani waits a few moments, then stands from the stool he is sitting on, stumbling slightly as he walks past the captain and out the door. Zurani takes another long gulp from the bottle once outside the tavern. Mazerith watches as Zurani exits the bar, drinking down the mug of grog that had been brought to him. He doesn't get up right away, but sits and watches as a few men and a rather buxom women stand from a table near the bar and do their best to exit without drawing any eyes. Standing after they exit he gives the bar one more look over to see if any stragglers were left to watch the rear. He too exits with his mug in hand, finishing the liquid inside. Zurani stumbles down the road, holding the glass bottle by the neck. He seems to have his attention drawn toward something down an alley. He turns and stumbles towards the mouth of the dark road. As he stumbles some more down the alley, he takes another gulp before being interrupted by a call behind him, D"Oi, mate, why do you want to know about Dragonarmy spies." The priest turns around to face the same folk that had departed the bar after him, "I 'ad 'oped to give dem a message from de Queen." Zurani hiccups as he speaks, cleary drunk from having drunk half the bottle of rum in his hand, "De real queen dat be...Rann de Maelstrom." The Ergothian laughs drunkenly at the five as they all draw some weapon or another, clearly angered at the insult. Mazerith picks up his pace a little, but does his best to not draw eyes from the gathering crowd in the port as the group disappears around the corner of the alley behind Zurani. He rounds the corner to catch the last of the cleric's words and watches as the ones who had followed him draw weapons. shaking his head slightly he moves in behind them smashing the women whom was closest to him on the head with his mug before stepping back and drawing a pair of ornate daggers from his boot tops. Zurani dodges stabs from the man closest to him, taking another long gulp rum as he does so. He also takes the mace from the loop on his belt for the second time that day, swinging it quickly and with none of the lethargy he exhibited just a moment prior. The iron cap comes down hard on the hand holding the dagger, causing it to fall to the ground. He then swings the mace over his head swiftly, landing a blow across the assaulting man's temple. As the man crumples to the ground himself, Zurani takes another long pole from his bottle, in the respite before the man before he comes in with a small mace of his own. Cabel stumbles into the foray, a flask held lazily in one hand, his broad dagger in the other. He lurches forward, barely missing being stabbed in the side, but then lurches backwards again. "Oy Maz! Is that you?" He says as he "loses grip" of his dagger which lands firmly in the back of one of assailants. He takes a swig of his flask, then bends over to retrieve his dagger, both times barely avoiding contact with blades.

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jan 27 21:38:43 2016 Subject Looking for a Fight, pt. 6

Mazerith stares in wide eyed disbelief as a ghost from the past breezes by him, or perhaps stumbled by him was a better representation of the action, taking down another of the five who had entered the alley. "Bloody Hell.... CABEL!?!?" Mazerith nearly choked on the words as they came out. It had been years since he last saw the man and honestly he thought him dead, or maybe just drunk in some alley somewhere. Shoving the man to the side suddenly to help him avoid a sword swipe from one of the last two assailants, Mazerith kicks the Dragon Army worm in the gut, forcing him to double over before swinging upwards with his dagger lodging it in the man's neck. Zurani dodges out of the way of a hastened swing of the man's mace. He is just able to miss taking the blow in the side, but the bottle of rum in his hand does not get missed. The mace swings through the bottle, shatter the base of it. A flash of anger crosses the priest's face as he brings his own mace overhead, then smashes downward onto the man's arm holding the mace with a resounding crack as the bone shatters. The mace falls to the ground, but the Ergothian does not let up. Zurani deftly brings the mace head down hard on the man's knee, causing him to fall to his knee and roll to his back. Fury now plays across the priest's face as he jumps onto the man's chest, and plunges the jagged end of the bottle still in his hand. The glass tears into the spy's neck over and over, causing gouts of blood to emerge. Cabel wipes his dagger on the shirt of a deadman before making it disappear. Removing his hat he does an extravagant bow, which almost leads to a face plant, thank goodness for walls and the such. "The one and only mate." He says to Zurani, before making a strange face and turning to who he thought he was talking to. "Seems I'm always bailing you out of trouble....." Mazerith looks between Cabel, as drunk as he remembered him and Zurani, now nearly covered in blood and can do nothing but chuckle. "Zeboim has smiled on us once more, Zurani. This here is Cabel Morgan, the man who helped me design and name Tempest all those years ago." Turning to look Cabel over he takes him by the shoulders. "I thought you were dead friend, the years have slid by all to fast." Letting Cabel go he motions to Zurani, "And this is Zurani, newly raise first mate of Tempest." Zurani stands from the man, indeed covered in blood, dripping down his face and covering his vestments. He gives a grin to the newcomer, the ruby in one of his many gold teeth glittering again. He then makes an overly exaggerated bow to the, "It do be a pleasure, Cabel." He looks down at his robes and frowns slightly before wiping much of the blood from his face. "I do tink it best we be on our way to de ship an' away from 'ere." Cabel hands his flask to the Ergothian, swaying as quickly searches the corpses for loot. "Years? Couldn't be more than a couple days...a week at the most." He says coming to his feet, his eyes twinkling. "How bout we finish this on the Ol girl?" Mazerith shakes his head at his old friends apparent lack of soberness to tell time. "I agree there, we have done all we can here and it be best to not linger for someone to find us in this scene." Pointing to the women he had laid out first, "She's still alive, and I'm sure we can get some answers out of her when she comes to." He hefts the lass up from the ground and waits as Zurani takes her other arm. The group then makes way from the ally, out of the port and through town. The winds were stirring once more and Tempest needed to be headed north as soon as she could. Mazerith just hoped the men he had sent to resupply and gather more able sailors did not find such a time within Port O Call. Time would tell though when they returned to her Decks.

Author: Zurani Date: Wed Jun 7 15:25:38 2017 Subject A Vision of Ice

The crew of the Tempest has stayed in the hidden cove, near Port O' Call, much longer than they had anticipated. The Dragonarmies have done nothing to seal off Newsea, and the time has given the crew of the Tempest the ability to modify the ship they had taken. It now could match the speed of the Tempest, though it is smaller. The ship's hull has been painted a deep red, and the banisters painted a seafoam. There is ample gold detailing added amongst the paint as well. The figurehead has been reworked and painted to the likeness of an avatar of Zeboim, and the name on the stern reads 'Maelstrom's Fury'. The newly fitted ship's captain, and the one who relayed the vision to the artisans, floats in the in the hidden cove near the ship. The morning sun shines down on his face as he prays to his goddess. As he finishes his prayer, he feels something wrap around his legs and drag him below the surface of the water. Instead of fighting against the pull, he gives himself up to it, allowing himself to be pulled deeper and deeper till the world goes black. The priest opens his eyes to find himself standing on the water before an immense glacier. He glances to his side to find a beautiful woman with green-black hair, and electric blue eyes, standing beside him. He gives her a delighted, golden grin, then looks back to the glacier as she points up at it. Suddenly he can see what was happening as if he were up there. A tribe of Icefolk have herded a frost covered musk ox to the edge of the glacier. The tribesmen prod at the beast in an attempts to knock it into the sea. The creature does not seem to understand why the people are treating it so. Zurani looks beyond the tribesman and finds a massive white dragon cracking a wicked looking whip at the backs of the tribesmen. One final crack from the massive whip and the tribesmen manage to surge forward and force the musk ox off the glacier, sending it plummeting into the frigid waters below. Without warning, the goddess and her priest are standing on the sea once more, beside the beast as it flounders in the water. The cleric's eyes snap open and he is once again in the cove, looking up at the Fury. He swims over to the ship and hauls himself up and onto the deck where the small crew is milling around. "Oist de sails, boys."

The Storytellers of Ansalon, The DragonLance MUD

Astinus points to the massive wall of books behind him and bids you to make a selection.


Authors: All|A|B|C|D|E|F|G|H|I|J|K|L|M|N|O|P|Q|R|S|T|U|V|W|X|Y|Z

Astinus sighs as he recants 'We saved 803 books from Ansalon from before the great Cataclysm through today.'
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