Seiankornai: course now it’s brought to mind that we were going to skip a week, but I can’t honestly remember if we already did or if it was to be this week…
Isabis: Oh, yes…I can’t recall either.
Seiankornai: (so says the two who were preparing for a trip to the other side of the country )
Isabis: yeah…I was losing track of days pretty badly last week
Jessaila: Actually, I think he might’ve said this was the week.
- Seiankornai remotes in home to his desktop to check his logs… yep, we played last week, so this must be the skipped one
Seiankornai: sorry for the false start, everyone
Malaina is disconnected.
Seiankornai: so I guess see you here again next week
Seiankornai is disconnected.
Jessaila: What’s the command for Imitate again?
Jessaila: I thought it was /im, but it’s not working.
Isabis: that’s right
Could not execute the command: “im somebody”, exception = null
You have disconnected.
You have connected.
Isabis: lets see if that did anything
Dragonhawk: apparently you have to be signed in as GM
Jessaila: Okay. Do I need to do that, then?
Jessaila is disconnected.
Jessaila has connected.
TheGM: Okay then.
Seiankornai has connected.
Seiankornai: ((I hear we’re doign something anyway?))
TheGM: I’m going to run a non-canon.
Thurirl: ((non-canon, so I hear))
- TheGM is Brock.
Seiankornai: (( k ))
TheGM: Okay, think I’ve figured this out.
- STARTING! -
Isabis: oh, and there’s also a /self command if you need to roll secret dice for any reason, such as making GM decisions on short prep
Isabis: as in /self « 1d2 = 1 » coinflip
You are in a town, some town that’s decent sized, which is holding a yearly festival, mostly famous for their musicians.
TheGM: ((Kay, thanks.))
- Malaina loves festivals
DH: One of the reinhabited ruins in the fertile river valley of Anmai; harp music is featured prominently in honor of the famous Pearl Harp
TheGM: ((Excellent suggestion.))
- Isabis admires the woodwork on assorted instruments for sale in the festival bazar, debating the difficulty/benefit analysis on learning to craft such things herself
There are probably a dozen or more famous harpists playing at various points around the festival.
- Thurirl keeps close to the rest of the group, though he’s not sure about going to a festival.
- Seiankornai has never been to a human festival before, but he likes the music so far, and the food when he can find it in proper portions
- Malaina wants to try all the food and listen to as much music as possible while eating all the food
Seiankornai: ((Mala is a girl after Seian’s own heart ))
Isabis: “Mala, you’ll be stuffed in the first hour if you keep eating full servings of everything we come across! Heh, try sharing with Vari, he’s got a bigger stomach.”
Malaina: “But festival food is just so good!!” talking with her mouth full btw
Isabis: “Hehe, sure, because they fry everything.”
- Berrathion is an elven harpist playing in the center of the festival. (Those with an Interest in elven culture will know that he’s quite famous, and has a magic harp that’s reportedly several thousand years old.)
Seiankornai: “I must agree, we’ve not had anything like this in any of the inns or taverns we’ve visited. What are these?”
- Vari also stuffing hsi face as well….with meat
- Isabis eats fried green beans and lets herself get distracted by Berrathion
Seiankornai: ((from before the fall of the elven empire perhaps?))
- Berrathion nods to the audience. “Welcome, all; welcome. Do you have any requests, my friends?”
- Malaina swallows her food, letting out a breath
You whisper to Jessaila: do you remember if we named that hymn Isabis found? She totally wants to request it and see if he’s ever heard of it.
- Jessaila knows a bit of Berrathion, but not as much as she ought to.
Jessaila whispers: I’m afraid I can’t remember if we did or not.
- Thurirl takes an odd delicacy of spiced meat and vegetables on a stick. He eats them one at a time, marvelling at the novelty of the design, and the perfect balance of flavor.
- Seiankornai roars over the crowd, “Play the Ballad Of Drevnos, the greatest of the drake kings!”
Jessaila whispers: But yes, do ask, if you please.
- Isabis has the required interest in elvish history and is totally ready to geek out over the ancient harp
Berrathion: “Ah, good choice, my good drake.”
You whisper to Jessaila: After Seian’s request, then
Berrathion: “That will require all my skill, and my best harp.”
You whisper to Jessaila: I hereby declare it “Hymn of All Thanks”
- Isabis glances at Seian’s food
- Berrathion gets out his magic harp and makes sure it’s in tune.
Isabis: “Is that fried rabbit ears?”
Malaina: “Wouldn’t that be a bit small for Seian?”
When Berrathium touches the strings of the harp, you feel your hair stand on end – in the pleasant way only good music can make happen.
- Malaina blinks at the sensation
- Seiankornai looks at the few strips of food in his hands, “Perhaps they have very large rabbits around here.”
Isabis: “Mmm. Well they’re frying whole rabbits over there, but what he’s got looks like strips of something folded onto the skewer. Maybe it’s just goat kabo…”
Seiankornai: “Ooooooh, I felt that”
- Isabis trails off at the sound of the music
Seiankornai: “There’s something of the divine in that harp, I would say.”
The entire air around you somehow feels more wholesome, more color-filled.
- Thurirl has no hair to stand on end, but his scales do tingle a little.
- Seiankornai puts away the food (not in his mouth, for once), and focuses his entire attention on the music about his sires.
Thurirl: “Fascinating. The harp seems to stimulate senses other than the auditory faculties.”
- Berrathion sings the Ballad in a gruff voice that could almost pass for a drake’s, though lower in volume.
Isabis: “Secondary reaction, I think…shhhh.”
The silver filligree on the harp also seems to glow, as if the silver has somehow got molten – and when particular notes are struck on the harp, the strings seem to turn colors as they vibrate.
- Seiankornai ’s tail and wings sway gently to the music
- Berrathion finishes the Ballad with a respectful silence.
- Thurirl seems a bit mesmerized until the music ends.
- Isabis waits a moment to see if people are going to applaud before attempting her own request
Isabis: “Ah, Do you perchance know the Hymn of All Praise? It’s in Kamil?”
- Seiankornai sniffs a bit, and Isabis is slightly interrupted by a large tear falling on her head
Berrathion: “Hm… it sounds strangely familiar. Say the name again, if you please?”
- Isabis jumps and wipes salt water out of her hair
Seiankornai: “That was beautiful, he even knew to play the notes that we drakes only can hear.”
Isabis: “Ah…oh…in kamil it’s called” (switches languages) “Hymn of All Praise”
- Isabis hums the first line
Berrathion: “I’m sorry. It sounds familiar, but I’m not sure I can place the tune well enough to… eh?”
The harp strings suddenly begin vibrating all on their own, and the notes coming out seem to match the song Isabis knows.
Isabis: “Yes, that’s it!”
Thurirl: “Fascinating. It seems the harp knows songs that even mortals do not.”
- Berrathion stares at his harp in something like shock.
Isabis: “What do mean? I’m mortal, I know the song. It was probably common when the harp was enspelled.”
Thurirl: “My apologies. My musings were poorly worded.”
- Berrathion hesitantly reaches toward his strings and opens his mouth – and his fingers start falling on the right strings.
Berrathion: “We praise you God, Creator, and offer gratitude.”
Berrathion: “For Avva in his courses, directed there by You.”
Berrathion: “We praise you for the heavens, and thank you for the care,”
Berrathion: “In sending mighty Moru to raise her lantern there.”
Berrathion: “We praise you God, creator, and offer up our praise,”
- Isabis grins hugely and whispers “That’s it, that’s it!”
Berrathion: “For Firey mountain glories that glow on dimmest days.”
Berrathion: “We praise you for the oceans, for Sasha’s might tides,”
Berrathion: “For sending us Torrnu’s rains and Rodon’s mountain rise.”
- Berrathion looks clearly shaken, as if he was not entirely in control of himself when he was signing.
Berrathion: ((Singing, rather.))
Thurirl: ((in Kamil?))
- Isabis whispers “…and for keeping this harp, so that we might hear the hymn played even after all these years lost. Amen.”
- Thurirl gets a translation from one of his Elvish companions. He’s rather surprised at the lyrics.
- Seiankornai listens, enjoying the music, but not understanding the words
- Jessaila agrees with Isabis.
- Isabis babbles excitedly at Jessaila in Kamil: “Can you believe it? The harp knew the song! That song might not’ve been played in centuries!”
Isabis: “Thank you sir!”
Berrathion: “You’re welcome, fair lady. There’s not been a request in two centuries which has caused such a thing to occur. I must write this song down at once.”
Thurirl: “Those are curious lyrics. What god was that in praise of?”
Isabis: “The one of whom we have yet to learn the name.”
- Thurirl looks taken aback.
Berrathion: “Please, come with me back to my quarters at once. If you know the words, I simply must write them down.”
Thurirl: “….are you saying there is a god on this world… who is hiding?”
Isabis: “You know, from the book. The High. I’m pretty sure it’s the same God.”
Isabis: “So yes.”
Isabis: “Would you allow my companions to accompany us, sir? My friends here,” gesturing to Jessaila and Malaina mostly, “know it too, though I probably know it best.”
Thurirl: “….he takes a name that is more a title… and does not make his presence known easily…”
Isabis: (aside to Thurirl) “Well, it was a title, I don’t think it was meant to convey his name.”
- Thurirl has to sit down and think. He gets more of those… what were they? Kabobs? Then he finds a nice, secluded place and eats as he ponders.
- Berrathion places his harp in the case, and bids Isabis and the others to follow him.
- Isabis moves through the crowd to Berrathion
- Jessaila accompanies Isabis, also being familiar with the song.
Isabis: “Are you coming Malaina?”
- Malaina snaps out of her thoughts and nods, following after everyone, Vari right behind her
- Seiankornai looks torn whether to stay and enjyo the food or go with the others on an interesting aside
Isabis: “That was so amazing! Have you really owned the harp yourself for two centuries?”
Berrathion: “Yes, lady; it’s been a treasure and a companion.”
- Seiankornai decides to follow after the others
Isabis: “A companion? I would’ve assumed that was figurative until I saw that, but now I have to ask – is it alive, besides just being shiny?”
Berrathion: “I… don’t think so. Not alive, as we’d call it. But it has a memory of older days.”
Berrathion: “You felt it when I played the Ballad, yes? I don’t think the harp is actually magical. I’ve had a magician look at it. He said there was nothing magically special about it. But then it’s done something like this just now, and I must wonder again.”
Isabis: “What, that colored glow effect isn’t magical? How is that…well, OK, obviously you don’t know how it’s possible, but…hmm. Now I’m sorry I sqashed my own temptation to use aura-sight while you were playing.”
Seiankornai: “Hess, it probably wouldn’t have revealed anything more. But I felt it, yes, there is something supernatural about it, if not magical.”
Berrathion: “Well, the magician said that trying to explain it made him feel like he was trying to belittle it – and that he couldn’t really be certain what was going on.”
Isabis: “Well, for things beyond natural, the choices are magical and spiritual…was the previous song that triggered the effect perhaps a hymn of some kind also?”
- Berrathion is silent for a few moments.
Berrathion: “Yes, I’m certain it was.”
Isabis: “Wow. You were literally correct, Seian, something divine IS in the harp.”
- Berrathion closes the door and brings out the harp again. “If you’ll let me write down the words, I’ll play you the other song, and tell you it’s story.”
- Thurirl would find this all fascinating, if he weren’t lost in thought somewhere else, chewing the end of his empty kabob.
Seiankornai: “It was at that, Drevnos was a favored one of the High King of the Dragon Kings, back when they walked these lands.” he is silent for a moments contemplation, “I wonder… if the High King might not have been that same unnamed God of the second song. I had always assumed he was one of the Dragon Kings, but now that I recall, none of the tails I know mention it one way or the other.”
Isabis: “You, sir, have a deal!”
Thurirl: ((“tails”? Seian, you dog! How many are in your harem? =P))
- Berrathion sits down. “Well, you know many of us elves remember when the humans came in to the Thousand River Valley. I remember it – I was there.”
Seiankornai: (( ))
- Isabis listens
- Isabis starts writing too
Berrathion: “When all was done and your ancestors had come, there were humans from the Matha folk who came to where I lived, together with my teacher. It was my dream to sing the songs of my own people, so far as we remembered; and one night I sat down with an old woman who’d been with your Lady Snowblade at the end.”
Berrathion: ((Moment, walking Lady L to her car.))
- Isabis takes advantege of Berrathion’s pause to get Jessaila to check her spelling
- Jessaila agrees on the spelling.
Berrathion: “The woman was dying of old age and overwork, but she knew many of the old songs that the Matha still sing today. Lady Isabis – you’re of the Matha, aren’t you?”
Isabis: “Yes, and Malaina here is too.”
Berrathion: “Ah. Then you’d probably recognize many of them.”
- Malaina looks up, her mind some place else
- Thurirl stops chewing and gets up, deciding to find his companions.
- Berrathion gazes off toward a blank wall of the room. “I wrote down all her songs so they’d be remembered – and I’ve made sure they would be. All except for the last one.”
You whisper to Thurirl: I bet a lot of townspeople know where the famous guest is staying
Berrathion: “She couldn’t seem to sing it – it was like she’d forgotten it, or been forced to forget it. Maybe something with the Crone’s magic. It was hard to ask those questions in those days.”
Isabis: “Forced to forget…how horrible.”
Berrathion: “She just asked me to play ‘a song she once knew’ – and of course I couldn’t, not knowing which song.”
Berrathion: “But then, just like today, this harp… knew. It had never done it before, and never since, until today.”
- Thurirl asks around the festival to see if anyone knows where the others went.
- Isabis finishes her transcription and sets it aside, reading her pen for the new song
Berrathion: “The harp played the notes, and when I touched the strings, I…”
Berrathion: “Well, you know how you feel when you’ve practiced something a thousand times, and then someday just do it without thinking? Like walking, or sitting up. You don’t even think about it.”
Berrathion: “That’s what it was like – on that night, and then again today.”
- Berrathion coughs.
Berrathion: “But now I’m going to play it.”
- Berrathion pauses, apparently still a bit self-conscious, before touching the strings.
- Isabis gives him her Full Attention
- Thurirl takes a little while to find out where everyone went, heading over there with all due (stealthy) speed.
You get the feeling that you’re in a thatched-roof cabin on a rainy night; there’s a bit of a chill, the warmth of a fire, and the scent of damp air. Above it all is the feeling of clouds floating around a tall mountain, like a sea; and a brilliant sky overhead.
Berrathion: “I cried out to the Most High, To the One who shall vindicate me. He sends from heaven and saves me.”
Berrathion: “Be exalted above the heavens Be glorified over all the earth.”
Berrathion: “My heart is steadfast, And I will sing and make music. Sing to the High One, my soul! Praise Him over the whole nation.”
Thurirl: ((waaaaaiiiiiit a minute…. is this a Psalm?))
Berrathion: " For your love is great and steadfast, Reaching higher than the heavens. Your faithfulness reaches to the skies."
Berrathion: Be exalted high above the heavens. Be glorified over all the earth."
Berrathion: ((I might have, uh, borrowed liberally? ))
Seiankornai: ((using a real Psalm is cheating ))
- Thurirl slows down as he nears Berrathion’s dwelling… there’s an odd feeling coming from it, and he swears he can hear music…
Berrathion: ((I said borrowed. I changed many many things. ))
Thurirl: ((hey, I’m thinking of using a real prayer for Terryn…))
Isabis: ((since when it quoting the Bible cheating for praising God?))
- Berrathion lets the harp fall silent.
Berrathion: “When I finished, that night, I looked over to the woman to see if I’d played the song she wanted.”
Berrathion: “She smiled, though not at me, and breathed her last.”
- Isabis scribbles down the last of the lyrics, then looks up
- Berrathion shakes his head. “It was like she was waiting to die – she wanted to remember something long denied to her, and mostly forgotten…”
Isabis: “Her god? The crone tried to make her forget her God? That’s, that’s…cronelike, I guess…but then…a miracle!”
Isabis: “…oh, but we still don’t know his name. Drat.”
Berrathion: “I played it a few times for some of the humans, but they didn’t like it much. Said it was Kamil nonsense. I only play it to myself, perhaps in defiance.”
- Isabis looks at the lyrics.
- Thurirl knocks on the door.
- Berrathion jumps.
Isabis: “I can understand that. Ah, I wouldn’t play the Hymn of All Thanks where many priests will hear it either, they got upset with me for taking it’s theological implications to heart.”
- Isabis looks out the door
Thurirl: “Greetings, Isabis. May I enter?”
Isabis: “Oh, there you are! Berrathion, may I introduce Thurirl the almost invisible?”
- Isabis opens the door
- Thurirl walks in and nods to Berrathion.
- Berrathion nods back.
Berrathion: “Welcome, Master Saurian.”
Thurirl: “You must forgive me. I had much to consider after you provided me with that translation.”
Isabis: “Wait until you see this one! It’s something the crone was possibly trying to make people forget, and it’s addressed to the Most High – sounds ever so slightly familiar, no?”
Thurirl: “That song… that hymn… I have never heard of this god before. I know almost every diety of the humans, dwarves, elves, drakes, saurians… even the goblins and ogres have gods that are known to me, somewhat.”
Thurirl: “Hmm? Another hymn addressed to this unknown god?”
- Thurirl tilts his head and considers. “Hmm… the Unknown God… perhaps a fitting title, for now…”
- Berrathion looks around a bit awkwardly.
Isabis: “And yet…‘be glorified over all the earth’ it says. So, not an unknowable God, or unwilling to be known. Just, eh, not flash or pushy and someone’s been trying to get him forgotten…”
Isabis: “Oh. Here you go.”
- Isabis hands Berrathion her copy of the Hymn of All Praise
Thurirl: “It does seem odd that the crone would attempt to erase all memory of a god. Do her agents seek to do the same with the others? Or just this one?”
Seiankornai: “One who wants to be truely known, then?”
Berrathion: “I’ve heard one or two things, like what you say, Lady Isabis. An unknown god. Maybe higher than Morru, or Avva… as inexplicable as that would be.”
Thurirl: “Inexplicable, perhaps. But not inconceivable.”
Isabis: “Your old lady’s song does call him ‘most high,’ doesn’t it? Hmm. Not denying the existenc of others who are high, but definitely claiming that he is highest.”
Berrathion: “Yes, that’s all true.”
Berrathion: “I’ve thought about it over the last two centuries.”
Seiankornai: “Some say the stars are higher than the moon, though the flee from the sun. Would this unknown god be one of them, or higher still?”
Thurirl: “I must give it some thought myself. I wonder how subtle this High One can be…”
Berrathion: “Once, about seventy years ago, I visited the territory of my gaunt kindred, to play for them old songs, and see if I could learn some that they might know.”
Berrathion: “Not the friendly sort. They locked me in an old dungeon, something from before the Cataclysm.”
Isabis: “Sounds very like the set we met.”
Berrathion: “I found something etched onto a wall, though how long it was there, I don’t know. But I’ve sometimes thought it connected to that one song.”
Berrathion: “And it might answer your question about this… unknown god’s name.”
Berrathion: “It said: ’It is sufficient that He Is.”
Isabis: “Huh. Doesn’t sound like a name…?”
Berrathion: “That’s what I wondered for… well, most of sixty years.”
Isabis: (quietly) “Quite a statement, though.”
Berrathion: “But I think now that, in some ways, it implies that the name isn’t entirely important. It’s the fact that HE IS.”
Isabis: "So…he’s the god “Is” then?"
- Isabis is trying, but she isn’t quite catching on yet
Berrathion: “In Kamil, it is phrased quite particularly.”
Isabis: “Ah, yes, the way you build verbs with the subject in them.”
Jessaila: “I think I know what you’re saying. In Kamil, the words ‘He Is’, lack any sort of temporal limitation.”
Thurirl: “Strange. A god who simply exists, forward and backward, perhaps without beginning or end.”
Thurirl: “I can see why the Crone would wish to destory knowledge or memory of such a god. It is quite possible he is beyond her power, and gave hope to humans while under her power.”
Jessaila: “It’s not something we’d use in Kamil to say ‘he is something’ – for instance, ‘he is good’, or ‘he is hungry’. There’s a completeness to it.”
Malaina is disconnected.
Isabis: “Now there’s a thought. Maybe time is above the sun. After all, Avva rises and sets according to his pattern, and never deviates.”
Seiankornai: “I suppose I will have to learn Kamil then, the only language I don’t know.”
Seiankornai: “Hmm, interesting idea.”
Thurirl: “I, too, wish to learn that tongue. My knowledge of it is insufficient for my travels.”
Isabis: “It has been coming up quite a bit for us. And in some unexpected places, like this.”
- Isabis thinks for a moment, then shakes her head
- Berrathion glances at Jessaila. “Well, it appears you have a native speaker with you. She knows the old grammatical forms, even. Most youngsters these days don’t bother.”
Isabis: “Hah. I guess even the cloud of the gaunt will produce a few flakes of silver lining.”
Seiankornai is disconnected.
Jessaila: “Had to learn it in a harsh and demanding school, unfortunately.”
Berrathion: “Do you mind if I ask where?”
Jessaila: “With the gaunt, unfortunately. I was, uh. Also held against my will.”
Seiankornai has connected.
Berrathion: “I understand. My brother’s with them now – a recent convert, but he bought their lies with open arms. Maybe you knew him. Logair?”
- Jessaila gets a horrified expression on her face and runs out of the room.
Berrathion: “…er. I take it she did…”
Isabis: “Uh…she, ah, she knew him. Yeah. I’m afraid he’s deceased. I, ah, won’t trouble you with the details of his criminal activity, I’m sure you’d prefer not to remember him the way she does.”
Berrathion: “Oh. I see.”
- Isabis sighs
Isabis: “Well…thank you sir. You have done us a great service, I think. Doubtless you should go and continue your performance soon, though, and we should doubtless go comfort our friend and perhaps eat some more improbable fried goods.”
- Berrathion sits silently for a moment. “I shall try to remember him as well as I can, then. Even if Logair was… in the end, well… We are still decreased.”
- Berrathion sighs.
Berrathion: “Please convey to her my apologies.”
Berrathion: “And yes, Lady Isabis. I thank you for bringing this song to me. I’ll write it down, and make sure it is heard again on some future day.”
- Thurirl nods to Berrathion and goes to hold the door for the others.
Isabis: “Thank you sir. And I shall.”
- Isabis nods her thanks to Thurirl as she passes out
Isabis: (er, passes him on her way out)
The Music Festival continues in full swing.
Jessaila is nowhere to be seen, however.
- Thurirl makes his way through the crowd, deep in thought…
- Isabis searches a little
- Jessaila has somehow managed to squeeze between two food baskets. She’s not crying, but she was at one point.
Isabis: “Jessaila? Come out, you’ll twist your back. Berrathion isn’t chasing your or anything.”
- Isabis tries to figure out what she should really say, but nothing comes to her.
Jessaila: “I know he’s not. I’ll go back to apologize later.”
- Jessaila comes out.
Jessaila: “Sorry. I just needed time to… think and compose myself.”
Isabis: “I can understand that. It’s been a lot to take in, even before that.”
- Jessaila looks away for a few moments.
Jessaila: “For years I’ve thought of Logair as some sort of monster. I knew he had a family – I knew he had a mother – but I somehow always imagined them as the same dark monsters.”
- Thurirl comes over. “It is easy to assume that family begets the same, is it not? Yet I think you would find that I am very little like my own family, or my people.”
Thurirl: “It is a hard lesson to learn that sometimes what we believe or assume is wrong. But it is worth learning, is it not?”
- Jessaila nods.
Isabis: “I chose not to fill him in on the monster part, myself. I’m sure he can imagine plenty for himself, what with having been there once. He doesn’t need me giving him all the horrible details.”
Jessaila: “I’ve met so few elves that I’d consider decent people, you know. Less than a handful. I sometimes wonder if elves like me are the aberations, not them. I wonder if my race is worth saving.”
Thurirl: “Come, Jessaila. Enough dark thoughts for tonight. Let us get you something to settle your nerves and soothe your heart. Take joy where you can find it, my uncle use to say. Life can steal it if you do not take care.”
Isabis: “Thurirl is right. Think of the new song we learned, and all the fascinating things they’re dipping in oil over there, and listen to the other harpists.”
Jessaila: “All right. But first I must apologize to Berrathion for my rude exit.”
Jessaila: “Don’t worry. I’ve composed myself now.”
- Jessaila steps away, and is gone for over fifteen minutes.
Meanwhile, two harpists are having a “duel” on a stage. They’re both quite good, and it’s near the Fried Sausage stand.
Isabis: ((corn dogs!))
Thurirl: ((not if they’re like fried chicken in Mexico…))
Jessaila: ((Anything further for tonight?))
Thurirl: ((not from me))
Isabis: ((not really, no))
Thurirl: gonna sign off then
- FINISH -