War of the Burning Sky

Entry #84 -- Wherein We Check Out The Forbidden Valley of Storms
Who cares about 'Permission'?

I don’t even remember the kid’s name. Y’know, the one we went to go save? It’s prolly not important.

We ran down a bit when Bird Monk Guy showed up and was all like “Hey, need help? I can totally do that.” We didn’t really talk about details much, since there was that kid that needed saving and all. He DID mention that since that Balance trillith thing is in his head now, that ‘laziness’ aura might help during the fight. And it did! After we kinda… worked around it.

When we got to those invisible body-snatchers, Laurya said there were three of ‘em floating around, but it was kinda hard to tell since they like to hide in plain sight, kinda like see-through bed-sheets that turn sideways when you don’t want them to. Everyone also felt really slow when Bird Monk Guy went up to get their attention, so it took a bit for everyone to shake it off and keep away from him so they didn’t get lazy again. Trilliths are weird. Crazy strong weird, but weird. Wonder what it would be like having one for a friend? One that didn’t speak in circles and stuff.

Anyways, we killed the invistalkers dead and Bird Monk Guy decided to take the kid back to town while we went on to check out (dun-dun-DUN) the FORBIDDEN VALLEY OF STORMS. Which sounds a lot like that one other forbidden place we went that was on fire forever, except it’s storms instead of fire. I kinda miss that place. It’d be a lot warmer than it is now. It’s supposed to be spring, but it’s still super cold and stuff.

The guilder wanted to scout ahead of us, which sounded like a super-sneaky-guilder thing to do (like tellin’ his buddies to set up an ambush and kill everyone) but it got really foggy as we got closer to the valley. It didn’t seem that far (maybe like a day away) but it’s kinda hard to keep track of everything when there’s fog everywhere you turn. Also we got jumped by a bunch of lightning monks that shot bolts out of their fists. That kinda sucked.

Bird Lady and I managed to jump outta the way while everyone else got sucker-punched and wound up seeing stars… if stars were like… more lightning bolts. It looked pretty b— hid— (dry pen scribblings)

Entry #83 -- Wherein General Sigma's Pet Dies

We didn’t have any trouble killing the guys that were supposed to ‘soften us up’. He was probably thinkin’ we were super-weak. Since he was a coward for lettin’ other people fight his fights, I strung up the road all pretty with his dead friends. Mr. Meatbag didn’t like the idea, but a few extra stabs made him sit still and not so wobbly.

Everyone tried to hide, but when General Sigma finally came, his pet was able to sniff out most of everyone’s hiding spots. Except me and the guilder, but he’s supposed to be sneaky. It didn’t matter too much in the end, since the elves all exploded magic in their faces. Y’know, fire and light and shadow magic stuff. It’s all really flashy and stuff, but I liked throwin’ daggers into Sigma’s stupid pet…. thing. A Destroy-chan? It made a funny noise when it died.

Sigma learned real quick that we were gonna kill him really fast, so he threw his sword away and surrendered. Like a coward! I wanted to fight more, but everyone wanted the blood to stop. I guess, but they started it! Still, Bre said it was better for the town to not hurt anymore, so I guess that’s fine.

Anyways, the general and his army ran away, and the town was all happy about not dying today. But the guilder and the big guy heard some kid get dragged away by… something? I dunno, they said it was invisible. It sounded like it went into the Forbidden Valley, which kinda sounds like a trap. But we were gonna go there anyways, so I guess it’s no skin off my nose.

I’ll write again later, Mr. Book! Maybe there’ll be something that isn’t afraid of dying for once!

Entry #82 -- Wherein We Learn About General Sigma
He's either really cunning or really stupid. My money's on the stupid.

We took the innkeeper guy back to Eresh, and everyone was in a panic about all the soldier guys ready to raid the place. Breora gave some fancy speech and got ‘em worked up to smash the Ragesians’ faces in. I guess since they live by the monastery, they know how to punch people really good, like the monks.

We were gonna charge in with ‘em, but some enemy-scout-runner-guy saw us and gave us a message that ’General Sigma’ was challenging us personal-like. Since that was our plan anyways (kill the big bad, the littler-bads all run like cowards) we went along with it. We thought it might’ve been an ambush, and we were kinda right. They sent in some flunkies to fight us and try to wear us out.

The first group was pretty squishy: just some archers and soldier guys. They had some sneaky types, but they weren’t very good at sneakeries. At least, not so good that they could avoid getting a dagger between the ribs. Hehe~

Entry #81 -- Wherein I Skip a Lot of Entries
I'm not lazy! I'm just... preoccupied~

I found you, Mr. Book! I knew you were somewhere in my pack. Maybe you’re learning how to hide from watchin’ me or something. I mean, if people can learn from books, books can learn from people, right?
I’m gonna skip a bunch of numbers because it’s been awhile and I don’t wanna write a bunch of numbers just to catch up.
SPHINXES. I tried to sneak by ’em and it heard me so it roared and woke up everyone. So we had to kill a LOT of people. Funny thing… when we killed the wizard guy that Lord Gallows told us to kill, the sphinx stopped fighting us and was kinda nice. Not nice enough to help us kill more people, but nice enough to stop clawing Bre in the face.

We also had to burninate some catapults and other stuff, which was easy enough. We didn’t have to sneak around sphinxes so it was easy to get to them without being spotted. They spotted us AFTER we already ruined their stuff, so we had to head back under the tunnels so they could cola collapc seal it back up.

As much as I wanted to nap after all that nightcrawlin’, Lord Gallows told us that the REAL fight was gonna start. And it did. With a bunch of armored guys on horses and stuff, we had to go in and “hold the line”. Whatever that meant. So, Bre and Nadia were all pumped up and heroic-like, but I just wanted to stab stuff and then everyone charged and there was a lot of screaming and blasting and fun stuff and lotsa blood—

But after only like a few hours, we got pulled out by Lord Gallows again. He said that us winning was a sure thing, so he wanted us to be fresh when we rode out back to Steppenwolf’s place to play out the “victory march”. Or something like that. It sounded boring. And it was. There was a lot of talking, but I didn’t pay much attention until Steppenwolf said there was gonna be a party! Games and tournaments and snacks and fun and all the things! Bre, Laurya and Rylik thought that Steppenwolf was doin’ stuff sneakily during the party to kill Gallows or something, but me and Nadia didn’t really care. FUN TIMES!

We went around town and played all sorts of games! Three Cups, a Talent Contest, and a JOUST. I got to ride a horse and smack guys off theirs with a stick! Everyone thought I was dumb for trying (maybe not the commoner’s joust, but I joined the main one), but they sure shut up after I clocked the first noble guy into next week. They thought it was a fluke, but after the second and third guys, I even got people cheering for me! It might’ve been Nadia and Laurya’s help workin’ the crowd, but whatever. Still, I lost the finals. The other girl was REALLY good at smackin’ people off horses, but I stayed on as long as I could… I just… fell asleep after the fifth or sixth stick-to-the-face… Shuddup Mr. Book I can tell you’re judging me.

While we were walkin’ around, Bre and Rylik heard some shady stuff like people bringin’ in barrels to the dungeons and the normal cooks for the castle being kicked out… and warned Gallows about possibly being poisoned. He had his magic guys throw a spell on him to make sure that didn’t happen, and figured he’d even ask people to swap dishes with everyone. I guess it’s a normal thing that happens in castles, because that just sounds really weird to me. My food is MY food, after all.

Either way, we figured we’d check out the dungeons sneaky-like and make sure everything’s on the up-and-up. We had to kill some undead stuff in the sewers to get there, but it’s a good thing we did. Remember that Ragesian diplomat guy? He was there, bein’ all “Ha ha, I’m gonna poison everyone at the party to make everyone crazy and kill each other and no one will blame me!” We killed him dead. I accidentally broke his mask too. I dunno why Rylik likes collectin’ them. I mean, I have stuff from people I like, but why would you collect stuff from people you hate? Maybe Seaquen has a contest for collecting the most bear-skull-masks.

Right, everyone was in trouble! We broke into the giant eating hall and said ‘DROP THAT FORK." At least I did. The others kinda explained it better to everyone. It was a bit late, since some people already had some food. Also, King Steppenwolf didn’t like us (and he might have been a bit crazy at the time too) and tried to kill us. And his gnome advisor person turned into a crazy snake monster trillith and also tried to kill us (we weren’t surprised by that last bit). Her name was Madness! We killed her… I think. I mean, she kinda disappeared into nothingness and laughed. Which isn’t like the time we killed the fire stag monster in the forest, since he kinda burned up into nothingness. Okay, maybe it’s kinda the same.

Madness DID kill Steppenwolf, though. That wasn’t our fault, but we couldn’t really fix it after it happened (He kinda turned into nothingness, too). Still, it’s not all bad! Lord Duke Gallows became KING Lord Duke Gallows, even though he wasn’t terribly happy about how he became king. Still, for saving Dassen from killing each other, we got rewarded with… some plots of land. Everyone seemed more-or-less happy with it, but what am I gonna do with a bunch of dirt? I didn’t like it, but I got nudged in the ribs a lot, so I just took it anyways. Nadia was super thrilled, and even got to stay to help the new king since his old gnome advisor person turned out to be evil. At least I know THIS gnome advisor was totally good. I still have her bracelet so I don’t forget her!

We had to get back to Seaquen to let ’em know that we did our job (to make sure that Dassen had our backs to help fight Ragesia), but we got held up in Vidor (the swamp place) again. Some trolls were kidnapping people and eating them, so Bre and Laurya wanted us to help them. We had to chase the trail down to some pyramid thing like the one where we found the attercops at, and killed them all! It was easy since I had my fire-dagger, but the others kinda had to scrape up ways to get fire to burn them to death.

After we killed those trolls, we made it back to Seaquen. We got to eat at a fancy dinner and were told by the Headmaster guy to go to the Monastery to the north, since the guys they sent up there didn’t come back yet. Then Katrina shows up and introduces us to Three-Weeping-Ravens (Bird Guy for short—don’t tell him that, though). He said he’d help guide us there, since it’s somewhere in the mountains and it’s kinda easy to get lost up there. Also, we had to teleport there with the help of the Wayfarer’s lady-boss (which normally would kill us, but we had super-magic to make us immune to fire for the trip. Which is probably good, since we traveled through Hell to get to where we teleported to). It was kinda fun, but landing made us all sick. Also, we landed in a cage of death-doom-trappery surrounded by guards, so we had to tell them we weren’t Ragesians. They believed us, since we weren’t orcs or that kinda stuff.

We talked to the lord guy of the place, I-Forget-His-Name, and he didn’t really seem to care about the Ragesians, since his buddy Pilus said they weren’t a big deal. We didn’t really care either. We wanted to talk to some monks, not this guy. I DID talk to his “harem” though. He seemed kinda new at the whole ‘King-Lord-Boss-Guy’ thing, and just wanted to be lazy instead of getting things done.

So, we made our way to the mountains where the monastery was supposed to be. It was a LOT of walking and stuff, but Bird Guy led us there. We got jumped by some Ragesian guys on the way in, but a dwarf jumped off a cliff and helped us kill them dead. Thorfin wanted to go to the monastery too, so we let him follow us there.

When we got to Eresh (the place where the monastery is at), it was already under attack by the Ragesians… kinda. They were just sitting outside, with all the swords and spears and stuff… but not doing any attacking. We just walked right in, while they were like “Wait. No. Stop. You’re not allowed to go in. Yawn.” It was even worse inside, since everyone was like that inside. Just… lazy and not all there. We did some talking around and figured we’d go talk to the monastery people straight away. We got sidetracked a bit by a lady acting all spooky, telling us we were upsetting “The Balance”. Still, DUTY CALLS and we tried to talk to the monastery people. On the way up, we got attacked by some wind monsters! I guess they were guardians of the path, but when we gave them the secret password (given to us by some monks that were with us) they still attacked! Jerks. After all that, we finally… FINALLY made it to the monastery.

They wouldn’t let us in. They didn’t want anything to do with us until we fixed whatever made everyone in Eresh all lazy and not care about stuff. Since we couldn’t really bust the door down and make them listen to us, we had to go back down and figure out how exactly we were gonna do that. Maybe just thinking about it fixed it, because when we came back down, everyone started snapping out of it. It was both good and kinda bad, because since everyone was so lazy, some of the soldiers were relaxing inside the city when they woke up and figured they would kill some people on the way out. We thought about killing them first, but they took hostages! Cowards. Esme really wanted to just kill them, but Bre and Laurya got them to run away instead of killing their hostages. I guess it’s probably better this way, but less fun.

One of the townsfolk thanked us for makin’ sure no one died, and asked us to follow him. We found one of the guys that was sent up here, Eril! (Torrent totally has a thing for him, I guess. I’m betting it’s a bow, since he’s a ranger.) He was pretty banged up and not really fit to do much help, but he did let us know that there’s somethin’ weird going on in the Forbidden Valley. It’s Forbidden for a reason, ya know. The storm there has been going on for years (almost similar to a certain forest that was on fire for years). We were gonna check it out, but someone else in town woke up and told us to follow HIM. So we did, and we met that one spooky lady from before! Except she was like super tired and resting in a bed. Dying. And also spontaneously changing into a guy and then back into a girl again.

It was weird. She called herself “Balance” and spoke all weird, like with “Metal-fours”. Y’know, like ‘The mountain will never bend to the wind, no matter how hard it blows," and stuff. Then, me and Esme figured out that she was a trillith! Like… not murder-death-kill like the other ones were, but nicer? I guess because ’balance’ doesn’t sound so stabby compared to ‘madness’. Somehow, she made all of Eresh all ‘lazy and stuff’ to ‘preserve the balance’, probably with dream-dragon-mist-magic. But when WE showed up, we kinda upset the balance. OH~ I just got that!

Anyways, Esme knew that trilliths could like… hide in a person’s head, or something like that. It’s hard to explain. It took a LOT of convincing to get Balance to go along with it (because she didn’t seem like a bad trillith) but we got her to hide in Bird-Guy’s head! It’s not that bad, but it does get kinda crowded at times. Bird-Guy got tired from having a near-dead trillith kinda sap at his life-force to not-die, so Thorfin took him up to the monestary while we figured out what to do, now that everyone is finally waking up from Balance not making everyone lazy.

Some more soldiers woke up, and were yelling about throwing the innkeeper off a cliff! Bre and Laurya didn’t like the sound of that, so we went over to kill them before that happened. More people were waking up, I guess, since some guys named Castagorn and Eoin showed up to help. Castagorn, the big guy, didn’t seem like a bad guy, but Eoin (who might be a girl? It’s hard to tell with elves) is a guilder. Or works for some assassin’s guild. Or something? Either way, we don’t trust guilders. They all deserve to die horrible horrible deaths with their guts hanging out their throats and—

We saved the innkeeper guy, even if he got slashed good. We to— took him t— (scribblings of a dry pen)

Entry #65 -- Wherein I Try Sneakeries
...I never had to sneak past Sphinxes before...

So….. Lord Gallows woke us up super early to do some sneakeries before the big fight. Simple stuffs, like assassinating a wizard and busting up some siege weapons. We thought it’ll be fun, so some guys dug underground a ways to the main enemy camp so we could get as close as we could. Then we snuck around and found the wizard’s tent. It was kinda odd: the guard guys around the area were kinda dazed or somethin’ and there was a sphinx sleepin’ next to the tent. I figured I could try to sneak in and do a quick stabbification and make it super fast… but SPHINXES! They must have super sharp ears, because it roared as soon as I got close to it.

I blame Esme. Not because it’s her fault or anything, but it’ll make me feel better about myself.

Entry #64 -- Wherein We Take a Leap of Faith
And we don't go splat at the end!

We did a lot of riding and finally made it to Dashgoboom! He seemed really nice and even gave us a drink of some dwarven ale after he said he’d help out Lord Gallows. I guess that tongue-twisty-talking back in Bresk did us some good, eh? After that, we talked to the guys in Pitchwood so they’d let the pitchlings do their thing and melt the river so Steppenwolf doesn’t just waltz right in and kill everyone.

To get to Lady Timor, we either had to risk the road and probably deal with some patrols OR climb the Glass-Steel Cliffs… They didn’t look like they were made of glass or steel… just REALLY REALLY cold. I mean, ice is kinda like glass, so maybe that’s why they call it that. Either way, Laurya did some fancy stuffs and saw some spirits trying to help me up the cliff or something. ‘Portents’, she called ‘em. I’ll have to use that in my fortune-tellin’ routine…

We managed to get up the cliff without too much trouble (although I think the duck spirit probably flew in my face or something). We showed her the orders we found in that outpost, and she was iffy if they were real. I mean, they were, but it’s still kinda bad that people are still second-guessin’ us. I guess it didn’t help that Rylik was wearin’ his fancy inquisitor masks like trophies. He even asked her to fix up the one that I… accidentally broke. I mean, it’s a great collection and all, but showing up in a mage castle place wearing one of those things can’t be too good for your health.

To get back to Gallows super-fast, we jumped off the cliffs we just climbed up! It would’ve been a super-stupid thing to do if we didn’t trust the mages that Timor let us borrow to cast some magics to let us drop down without splatting at the end. IT WAS SO FUN TOO. I think I could’ve stabbed a goose on the way down if Esme wasn’t screaming for dear life. That was kinda funny too, actually~

I guess now we’re restin’ tonight to go kill— I mean, follow Gallow’s warplan to stop Steppenwolf from killing everyone so the Ragesians don’t have to. I wonder why Steppenwolf is even crazy like this in the first-place… I mean, you usually have good reasons to kill your loyal subjects and all, but still… Lord Gallows seems like a decent enough guy.

Eh. Whatever. I’m gonna nap. Nighty-night, Mr. Book!

Entry #63 -- Wherein We Skip A Number
I may or may not have accidentally torn out a page...

So, we killed like a BUNCH of those guys, all in one go. It was pretty close, but we got ’em all. I even got the Inquisitor guy myself!

We took the few guys we didn’t kill with us back to Duke Gallows, but he was more interested with some papers we looted from the Ragesians. I guess they’re invasion orders or something… Either way, we’re gonna go to Dashgoboom and Timor and show them the stuff so maybe they can help us out not get killed by the king! And avoid war and stuff.

So, we began our trip through the Pitchwood, which is famous for pitch…. and Pitchlings! In fact, we even found some trying to sneak up on us, but Bre had a sneaky plan. I guess they set torches on fire when they get too close to us, so she had one set up just in case. We did some talkings (even me! I still got that fancy necklace from Rhakesh that lets me speak Elfish) and got ‘em to help us slow down the king’s army and even melt the river for us! I had to toss some of that sticky pitch in a contest, and they were nice enough to even give me a second chance when I flubbed up. It’s HARD, Mr. Book! YOU try throwing that sticky black stuff…

Entry #61 -- Wherein We Try To Be Sneaky
I'm sneaky! Why can everyone else be sneaky?

So, we finally made it to the outpost WAAAAAAAAAAAAY out in the middle of nowhere, after riding like a super-long time. It’s on top of this hill, and they got another one of those lizard-bird things… (Why-ferns! I still dunno why they’re called that) We tried to be sneaky and tip-toe up the hill. I probably coulda done it super easy myself, but then I’d be a sittin’ duck inside a barrel with fish with the biggest target on my back yellin’ at everyone to shoot me… I’d rather Breora to do that instead.

We didn’t get that far up the hill when they spotted us, so we got to hoofin’ it. I jumped up the road, but I didn’t think Rylik could climb up right past me so fast! I guess all those biomagical stuffs are good for somethin’… shame it makes him look super-creepy.

The guys on top of the tower started shootin’ at us and the why-fern even started flyin’ about. It picked up Laurya and threw her down part of the hill! They play dirty, that’s for sure… But then again, bad guys always play dirty so I guess it’s normal.

Oh. I guess this is the last page, Mr. Book! I’ll keep you around since you know so much stuff and it’s good to keep ya around. Don’t worry, I got another one so I can keep writin’ and it’ll even give you company in my pack! Maybe it’ll even be a Mrs. Book? Eh? EH?

Entry #60 -- Wherein We Ride even LONGER
I'm beginning to hate horses, I think...

So, we killed all the Steppenguards and the knights took us to Mr. Gallow’s place. It’s pretty swanky, with all sorts of places for sneaky archers to shoot and everyone’s carrying around a sword… If you were gonna try to do some tricksy stuff here, you’d have to be REALLY good at it and not get caught or everyone and their mother would kill you.

We talked to Mr. Gallows and he said he had a plan. We slept in this big manor (or at least I tried to. I’ve not got a lot of sleep…) and woke up in the morning. He was playing with some dolls and a big toy table that looked a lot like outside. I guess we have to go to an outpost, kill some Ragesians and bring some people alive to Dashgoboom and Timor so they’ll help us? I kinda slept through it, to be honest. Don’t tell, Mr. Book!

We’re already close to the last outpost. Maybe we’ll have fun soon!~

Entry #59 -- Wherein There's a Lot More People Than I Thought
Don't worry, it's a good thing. Mostly.

Hello again, Mr. Book. Sorry I’m not super enermegetic, but I didn’t get much sleep last night. Or the past couple nights. Ugh. I suppose it didn’t really matter anyways in the long run.

Breora and Birdlady said we had to leave like super fast, because I guess the King figured it’d be easier to deal with us if we were dead? I didn’t get a lot of it, but I guess we’re framed as traitors or spies… It kinda sucks: we didn’t even do anything wro— okay, maybe SOME of it was kinda wrong, but still. Ball’n said Mr. Gallows was probably the best guy to go to help, and I guess a lot of other people thought that too. Some drunk guy warned us and said to go to him for help, there was a sir-gent guy at the gates that gave us horses and told us to go to Mr. Gallows… Yup. I smell somethin’ fishy, and it ain’t fish. At least I’d have somethin’ to eat.

Either way, we had to leave the city super fast. They were bustin’ down doors and stuff, searchin’ for us. Anywho, we left Bresk to see Mr. Gallows, who was like a few days away. We crossed the border to his lands, and these guys who were tailing us all the way were like ‘Yup, they be traitors, all right’ and chased us down. We got some back-up from some patrollin’ guards and they were like ‘We knew you were coming, we got your back." I guess they were nice and all, they just think the King’s gone a bit over-the-top with this spy stuff.

It was a pretty tough fight, Mr. Book. They would’ve mobbed us with their stupid horses and that giant ‘sphinx’ (That’s what the others called it. It looked like a bird-lion-sheep, but it’s not the weirdest thing I’ve seen so I guess they can call it whatever), but Mr. Gallow’s patrol kind of evened the odds a bit. Heck, after I tore off this guy’s face, Rylik even got him to move again and fight the bad guys! Bre and Laurya were kinda iffy about it, but Dead Ned is one of us! Except dead… and that’s okay with me. Between Ned, Birdlady’s new pet bear (It’s got a really long name, so I’m just gonna call it Bear until I can figure out how to write it), Breora’s other self (It’s like her, but like a super-awesome knight! Esme calls it an ‘imperfect dream self’, but she looks pretty cool to me)… We got a lot more people than I thought.

I’ll write again soon, Mr. Book. I really need a good nap…


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