In the mountainous land of Adar, fall is drawing to a close and winter is beginning to make its presence known, and with it the increased threat of the Inspired, who are perfectly willing to sacrifice soldiers to the cold in order to intensify their attacks against the Land of Refuge. The defenders of Adar are prepared, though, including the elusive organization the Summit Road. The six of you have undergone extensive training and testing of loyalties over the last few years. You’ve trained hard, proved your loyalty, and performed acts in service of Adar, the Land of Refuge. Now, you’ve all finally been accepted into the Summit Road as green guides. You know that green guides are at first only trusted with the exact information needed for their mission, but that if you succeed at your early missions, you’ll steadily be trusted with more and more complex missions and information. But for now, you’ve been called by a trailblazer, one of the Road leaders, to a small room in the fortress-monastery of Malshashar. Looking around, you can see a small group of you has been assembled. What might your first mission be?
(Everybody please post a brief physical description of your character as well as their actions as they enter the room. It’s just the six of you right now, no visible authority figures or others. Once you’ve posted your intro, please wait until everyone else has gotten their intro post up, then it’s open posting!)
Taran walked cautiously into the room, his eyes flicking about to take in the people in the room, but not lingering at the risk of making eye contact. He'd tried to make himself presentable, this was his first official meeting after all, but doubts swirled.
His leathers were worn, he'd had them for some time after all, as was his crossbow. He still wasn't sure about bringing it to the meeting , what if it gave off the wrong impression, like he was planning on attacking the trailblazer? That was ridiculous of course, he'd never, and Father had always said he should keep his weapons on his person constantly, on the other hand...
And so it went, Taran standing, his slight body practically quivering with nerves, beside the door. Add in his young age, and he looked more like an acolyte called for a scolding than a trained warrior called to his first mission.
A soft clacking can be heard from the hall approaching the room. It stops after a moment and goes silent before a small head covered in black feathers peeks in, their curious dark eyes darting around to take in those present. After a moment of nothing the small black bird-like child enters the room with a gentle coo and more soft clacking, turning their head sideways to inspect Taran. The light glint's off of the chain shirt covering their chest, the dark material matching that of the black blade on their back as well as their black beak, which is missing the pointed tip on the bottom.
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Dungeon Master - RoA River - Hexblade 2, Grave Cleric 1(Kenku) - TSR Minami Alani - Glamour Bard 5 (Half-Elf/Half-Lynx) - ToD
Back straight, eyes forward, chin held up high, Vishal enters the room with an air of confidence. Each step light and purposful as he walks. His long brown hair is tied up into a tight bun today letting the world see his face, which still holds some of that boyhood in it, and his piercing blue eyes that have that slight Kalashtar glow to them currently. Those eyes take in his surrinding and upon seeeing the others, and no authority figures around, he give them a hundred light cantrip smile, and relaxes slightly before joining them within the small group.
Before a word has gotten out Vishal's eyes have taken in these other green members and he has begun comparing himself to them. His mind not being able to help but compate specifically to Taran. Where Taran has old leather that has obvious scene better days, Vishal is in brand new never scene combat studded leather, along with some fur lined leather boots and gloves for the coming winter. Over top his armor is a simple but neatly made leather jacket to also keep him warm.
At his side Vishal has two chakrams both with a leather wrap around the handles. These weapons also look brand new and incredibly made. The final thing of note is that Vishal seems like he is ready to go as he already has his backpack on as well and it looks like it is full of a variety of things.
Smiling his attention is at the door as he waits to see who else arrives for this meeting of new Summit Road members.
A joyful whistle is heard by those in the room, followed by a consistent and rhythmic tap on the floor. A seemingly looking young men, thin and short with a round, sharp-chinned face enters the room nonchalantly wearing some sort of cane. Dressed with an old duster and what looks like to be a bowler hat he seems to not notice the current occupants. He hesitates briefly removing his hat with his hand, before returning his hat again to his head, shrugging briefly. He chooses a place close to everyone and lowers his whistle to a lower volume and looks at everyone in the room absorbing the details.
As the small group starts to settle, discreetly taking the measure of one-another, the heavy oaken door swings open with a nerve-wracking screeching of its iron hinges, and soon the group sees a great, scarred fist wrapped around its handle... after which the rest of a massive body comes into view, emerging slowly and purposefully from the half-light of the corridor: roughly the size of a small mountain bear, the bearded brute covered in furs and animal hides entering the room looks like it just escaped from a carriage crash, or a tavern brawl. The man's hair is a vast tangle of mated dreadlocks of the deepest black, sprinkled with beads, leather cords and small animal bones - one could guess that was the stranger's idea of fashion, if scarecrows, highway robbers and undertakers were interested in fashion of any kind - and between the great hairy mess and the equally hairy, black and scruffy mass of long, bristly beard underneath, the only sign of intelligence can be seen in the two deep set eyes, shining with a ferocious, hazelnut green intensity above two high cheekbones seemingly carved from brown flintstone. As the man comes into the light one can notice a wide, purplish bruise spreading around the left eye, confirming the hypotesis of the bar brawl.
Sniffing the air like a beast of prey and slowly swinging its boulder-sized head from side to side, the wild-looking apparition seems to be examining the occupants of the small room... a room that suddenly feels even more cramped by the thing's hulking presence in its midst. It then utters a sound similar to a grunt, as if mumbling something to itself, but the words are too muffled for anyone to hear and its lips seem almost invisible through the cake of grizzled hair surrounding it. There seem to be a few small crumbs sprinkled in the beard right around where the mouth should be, but they're all abruptly and quite violently catapulted towards the far wall as the bear-man gives out a great, horrid shout.
After a few tense seconds, a sniffle comes out of the mass of hair and the company realizes this was probably the sound of the newcomer's sneazing. A small sniffle quickly confirms their supposition as the hirsute fellow swoops purposefully towards Taran, its feral green eyes set fixedly on the frail, shy-looking youth, its trunk-sized legs closing the distance with horrifying speed until it's suddenly already upon him, one of its huge paws clamping like a vise on the boy's right shoulder and forcing him down... and further down... towards a small wooden chair, set by the small table near the southern wall.
" Sit. Ya makin' me nervous, lad. "
The command is peremptory, yet the gruff voice strangely amicable as the fur-covered man turns its attention to a big earthen jug set on the same table. Soon most of the contents of the jug come splashing into the big man's throat, at least the half that doesn't end up spilling on his beard and running down his chin. He quenches his thirst and takes another seat next to Taran, with a small grimace of disappointement as he spits the words:
" Water ! Mmmph... "
Seeming to really notice the group staring at him for the first time, he looks again at each and every one of them and finally gives a great big sigh, as if accepting the terrible truth that these were to be his companions.
" What y'all gawkin' at ? Never seen a man drink ? "he asks the assembly, only half expecting an answer, then he gives out another grunt, as if answering it himself.
Taran was surprised to see Druhdaar enter the room, and it set off another maelstrom of emotions within him. Druhdaar respected Father, Father had saved his life once after all, with both of them here did that mean it was somehow related? No, that didn’t make sense, it had been years, it was just coincidence, maybe…
He let the massive man guide him to a chair.
“Oh- Of course, Druhdaar-sir, I’m sorry, I- um, I mean...” he trailed off as the bear of man walked away.
Fidgeting would just annoy him more, but checking his equipment was likely fine. Can’t fault someone for making sure everything was in its place. Taran’s fingers brushed against the small pouches and vials dangling from his belt, ensuring each was sealed properly so the various materials wouldn’t be ruined. He checked the healer’s kit strapped to his back, making sure it was still properly clasped, the dagger, the sword.
He was running out of things to check, he knew he’d start fidgeting, and then Druhdaar and the others… Taran latched onto the idea, it was bold, bolder than he normally would envision, but it was time to become a member of the Summit Road right?
“M-my name is Ta-Taran Cragshollow,” he mumbled into the corner of the room, “I’m glad to meet you. Are you all members of the Road?”
Watching as everyone else arrives and making his silent judgements, except for Druhdaar. Obviously Vishal wants to say something but refreains from it for now. Instead looking at Taran and focusing a little bit, his eyes glowing a light blue as he does.
You hear Vishal's voice in your head as he says, "Don't worry about fidgeting. Or let him tell you what to do."
Giving Taran a smile at the end of the phychic message he speaks up and says, "My name is Vishal. I assume we're all members of the Road. And its very nice to meet all of you."
Taran darts his eyes between Vishal and the small, black bird in chainmail. He'd known talking would get attention, but he had been hoping other people would get talking and he could fade into the background.
It hadn't been a successful plan. He shrank down in his seat, even with the encouraging words of a Kalashtar, he just couldn't... He needed a distraction...
"Um..." he glanced around the room looking for another vase of water, "Does anyone need something to drink? Or I could grab food, though that'd be rude for when the Trailblazer came, but I might have some rations if... I'll be quiet now."
There are a couple more jugs of water on a side table that also holds extra mugs and a small water clock that informs you it's mid-afternoon. The jugs and mugs are, in the usual Adaran style, elaborately engraved with swirling patterns and lines and glazed, these in shades of orange and red.
Juhaan looks at River with his eyes glinting when he heard her mimicking perfectly.
He tries to do exactly the same, copying the accent and the word cadence of Druhdaar:
"Ya makin' me nervous, lad. "
Deception for the attempt: 7
"Curious. Rough pattern, strange accent. Need more time to learn" he says mostly to himself. He then turns to the others "Greetings Vishal and everyone else" he says bowing with hat in hand "I'm Juhaan"
Druhdaar grunts with surprise at the Kenku's uncanny mimickry, leaning forward with his elbows on his thighs, the wooden chair he sits on creaking in protest under his weight. He then glares at Juhaan after the young bard's less-than-perfect rendition. The big man's expression - from what one can make out through the wild tangle of hair and beard covering most of his face - goes from surprise, to something worryingly close to contained fury, to finally end with a great shake of his head, as a deep chuckle comes out from beneath his mane of long, thick braids:
" What is this now, a parrots convention ? I understand a bird would wanna do that..."he looks at River with an amused look, before his pale green eyes settle on Juhaan with a colder stare, " but you, son, sounded like a drunken Dromite with a head cold, back then ! "He sighs and stretches, a scent of rancid sweat and woodsmoke wafting from beneath his arms as they get raised high above his head then lowered again, his hands falling back down on his thighs with a resounding slap.
" Anyways, name is Druhdaar. If you find I'm talkin' funny, knock yerselves out, but don't piss me off with it. Fair warning. "
He starts scratching his beard and looks up at the ceiling, obviously getting restless in this small room full of strangers doing voice impressions.
Smirking a littl bit Vishal says aloud, "Impressions are a great way to pass the time."Still staning in the middle of the room his eyes focus on Juhaan and begins to glow again as he opens up mental communications with the man.
"I think your impression was quite funny. Keep it for next time."
Still giving a giant smile Vishal's attention then turns to the Kenku and the man in the back, "However, before we continue to pass the time I think we have a couple names to learn still."He continues to stand in the middle room, not bothered by the potential of attention turning to him.
The man in the corner frowns and walks over to Vishal in the center of the room. He opens his book to the first page and presents it to Vishal. It reads: "This book belongs to: Caelius Crystaljumper." Below that in smaller writing is "Excuse my silence, I can not hear nor speak. Please speak clearly but not too slow and I’ll be able to understand."
He then faces every other green guide in the room, presenting the page in turn. He flips to the next page which is covered short words with the alphabet at the bottom. He begins spelling out a sentence. "What D-I-D The K-E-N-K-U Say Their N-A-Me Was?"
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"The relevant equation is: Knowledge = power = energy = matter = mass; a good bookshop is just a genteel Black Hole that knows how to read." - Terry Pratchett