An Unnamed monument

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The Undying
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An Unnamed monument

Post by The Undying » Sun Feb 12, 2017 2:27 am

Bodies of fallen soldiers lay strewn about the tunnel opening. Within, yet more formed a broken line leading down the corridors and into the temple's inner sanctum. Those that remained alive limped up onto the surface with gushing wounds and broken bones.

Eristed sighed mournfully. The Throalic scouts had simply been in the wrong place at the wrong time, and they'd paid dearly for it. To say the Dwarves had not assisted in felling the Nethermancer would be unfair. Still, Eristed wished that they had simply remained on the surface: a battle between Adepts is rarely a place for those without magic.

Now, there were wounded to tend to and dead to bury. True, he and his companions were finished here with the Nethermancer slain, but Eristed could not bear the thought of leaving this final grisly task to what remained of the platoon. The soldiers had suffered enough, and a day or more's work burying their brethren in unmarked graves was too much. There was time enough to ease this burden.

After a brief discussion, Shale and Minuial set about the task of helping with the fallen while Eristed settled down upon the scorched earth. The Summoning work would be tricky, many spirits working at once on separate tasks, but they could only stay so long. He cleared his thoughts, relaxed his body, and began his ritual.

First, he called out to the Earth. The solid, unwavering strength of the rocks and soil flowed up into him, and time seemed to slow. In moments like this, he felt more connected to his Obsidimen companion Shale: knowing the agelessness of the World where the passage of seasons and Namegiver footprints across vast miles upon miles were all but tiny moments that stretched into the past and future without end. There is a peacefulness in the Earth that seems almost incomprehensible to a Namegiver.

The spirits began to respond with the faintest of shifting beneath him. They responded to the call without urgency, approaching Eristed with a lack of interest unmatched among their fellow Elements. One spirit, the weaker of the two, came forth from the local Astral Space. Eristed could feel it untwine itself from a local vein of gold far below the surface where it had been relaxing, slowing stretching itself out lazily, the rivlets of the precious metal steadily tendriling out with each stretch. The stronger spirit, however, seemed far more alien as it approached, no doubt drawn from the Elemental plane through some hidden cache of True Earth nearby.

With whispered tones, Eristed spoke to the two spirits in their tongues, not wanting to alarm or distract those around him. He gave each their instructions, and each in turn moved away without comment or care, forming into the nearby physical Earth to begin their task.

Next, Eristed called out to the Water. The change in his impressions was almost jarring as Water was almost everything Earth was not. Where Earth was still, Water was motion unending. Where Earth was timeliness, Water existed only in the moment. Where Earth was detachment and disinterest, Water was longing. Water was adventure, the calling to explore and to experience.

From high above, a mischievous Water spirit began to descend. Eristed could sense the frustration that it's work with the Air spirit in stirring up the spring storm would go unfinished, but there was also excitement to discover the source and reason for the summon. The spirit coiled around Eristed, swirling harmlessly around the Adept, prodding gently at his Pattern curiously. Eristed described his desired task for the spirit, emphasizing the way in which the spirit would be altering the world through its actions. A feeling of happiness drifted through Eristed as the Water spirit agreed to the task.

With summonings complete and the Earth spirits finished in their preparations, Eristed stood and stretched out the kinks from his body. He called out to the captain of the platoon and waited for his arrival. "Tell your men not to be alarmed," Eristed said simply while unfastening his waterskin. "I've prepared a special sending for the deceased." The captain looked confused at the Adept as Eristed poured the water from his skin over his hands and arms then emptied what remained onto the ground before him.

Eristed rolled his shoulders back and forth and stretched his neck about once more. Then, with no further word, he bent down to the ground upon one knee and placed his hands upon the soil. The captain stepped back in shock as the Adept's hands sunk into the soil slowly up to the elbows. Suddenly, a gentle but loud rumbling began to quake across the plain underfoot. The other soldiers looked up in alarm, some reaching for the weapons at their hips, but the captain shouted for them to remain at ease, though he knew not for what.

A measure of strain upon his face and in his back, Eristed began to draw his arms from the ground as if heaving some immerse burden. His hands emerged from the soil, but beneath them, some form of massive rock also began to rise. A pyramid shape began to drive up from somewhere below, its base growing wider and wider until it fell away to downward sides. The strain in Eristed's body melted away with the top of the pillar free from the surface, but his hands remained on the semi-smooth side before him as the structure continued to grow.

With a misty burst, the water from his hands and from the ground surged up and beneath Eristed's palms in near explosive force upon the rock. His hands glided just above the surface of the pillar, an immensely powerful font of water swirling viciously against the stone. With each arching arm movement, the rock surface was polished to a mirror sheen in trails. Eristed steadily walked around the object, leaving no surface untouched, working in time with the steady rising.

Another wave of shocked voices erupted from the soldiers as the bodies of their lost comrades slowly sank into the ground one by one. Under the guidance of Minuial and Shale, the soldiers had lined up the corpses in orderly fashion with even spacing, likely under the assumption that they were preparing for the long task of burying each. Instead, each was delivered gracefully to their final place of rest while their friends looked on.

Alarm gave way to awe, and awe gave way to grief. A solemn air filled the plain as the soldiers lined up in file without spoken order. They stood quietly, not quite with the rigor of full attention, watching as each form and face slipped into the earth. Behind them, the pillar grew ever taller.

Finally, the last of the fallen were tucked into their graves, and the trembling in the earth subsided. A massive obelisk towered overhead with no less height than any three Trolls might stand. The midday sun reflected brilliantly off the glossy finish.

Eristed stepped up behind the captain and clasped him on the shoulder. "The sacrifice of your men should never be forgotten. This may help to assure that." The captain seemed to barely notice the gesture or the words as he stared up at the obelisk.

Without further words, Eristed gathered his belongs and heaved on his backpack. He nodded to his friends, and the three Adapts began to head onward to their next destination.

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The Undying
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Re: An Unnamed monument

Post by The Undying » Sun Feb 12, 2017 2:31 am

I wouldn't so much call this an adventure journal. However, this particular subforum felt like it was going a bit under-used, and I didn't want it to languish.

This IS actually a (hopeful) bit from our adventure, a series of summonings I hope to pull off in our next session. But it's really just a moment in time, kind of unconnected to the actual story and not really of any true importance. However, this is Eristed's first significant working of Summoning since becoming a Journeyman and gaining access to the Talent. As such, I wanted it to be something magnificent. In that mind set, I figured I'd also create a larger, more fiction-oriented work describing it versus my usual brief in-character log entries.

I hope you enjoyed it. I must admit, I'm not much of a writer, but I think this works well enough.

Slimcreeper
Posts: 718
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 11:44 pm

Re: An Unnamed monument

Post by Slimcreeper » Sun Feb 12, 2017 4:55 pm

I certainly enjoyed it.

Tattered Rags
Posts: 357
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 12:04 am

Re: An Unnamed monument

Post by Tattered Rags » Sun Feb 12, 2017 7:54 pm

I enjoyed it, too.
Adventure I'm running:
Under the Stars

Adventure GM post-mortem:
Under the Stars Postmortem

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The Undying
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Joined: Sun Nov 27, 2016 11:25 pm

Re: An Unnamed monument

Post by The Undying » Mon Feb 13, 2017 12:23 am

My gaming group recently had a fairly lengthy discussion about what it means to have "balance" in a game and how important rules really are. Lots of really great insight from everyone, and it serves as a reminder that the reason a system exists is to facilitate enjoyment, not constrain it. Fiction, whether fan or professional, I think helps us see how individual ideas can be expanded just in fun and interesting ways, giving all of us a better impression on both how things COULD work if we wanted as well as how it FEELS in the universe. The specific mechanics get to fall by the wayside a bit - whether the GM is using a more lax summoning system (e.g., multiple spirits per summon as a compounded difficulty) or the player is just craftily chaining together different summonings (e.g., three different summonings, one right after the other) really isn't IMPORTANT, as long as the GM is comfortable with the concept, everyone agrees it isn't too power (this entire thing has really zero impact on gameplay), and everyone thinks it's fun/cool.

Anyways, I think I'm giving up the idea of posting my in-character journals. There's just too much lost back story (group didn't start keeping an adventure journal until more than two dozen sessions in, resulting in sparse backward population, and then it was only bullet point stuff for more than a year before I started keeping my in-character journal). However, if people enjoy this little moment in time capture of one of our experiences, I'd enjoy going back and cherry-picking some more of Eristed's defining moments and creating some more short fiction on it.

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