The New World, Same as the Old World

There is at least one thing I am grateful for. I know my place. Ever since Anrudiel returned from his ‘heroics’ everything has gone up in the air. I’m not sure as to what will follow but at least it still continues as it unfortunately always has.

Keolith was married a few days ago to Windswept Flower. I was told it was a beautiful ceremony. Somehow he managed to get both the Elves and Dwarves to act civilly towards each other to bless their marriage. It was enough in fact for me and their clerics to consecrate an area burial. Not that it didn’t have it’s own troubles in itself, and in fact has been the cause of mine.

Keolith, under Flower’s suggestion,  was madWarden by myself (the human counterpart to an Elven Gillie). In human terms this puts him as a lawkeeper, something I never thought I would even consider. The village has grown under my delicate control, I’m scared it won’t survive.

This whole marriage thing has really turned everything on its head. I have to delegate responsibility to someone with limited social skills who I’ve only known for a couple of months. It is madness. At least when Flower was our Gillie we were good, but now we have him. Well, we would have, if Throgan hadn’t intervened.

Kevlannan and his group of friends, as you know managed to get Fair Harbour  in talks with the Dwarves due to their ‘discovery up north’ of the Children of Ruvalk. Unfortunately that discovery has not stayed in place. From my limited understanding of Dwarven history, there was a Prince Doric, son of first Donragh king, King Rurak. What we discovered as we blessed the lands was part of Doric’s court’s crypt. Ley magic had somehow displaced it from its location far underneath the Irador mountains.

Throgan already knew about this second dwarven citadel and having proof of its existence shoved into his face sent him into overdrive. He didn’t offer to go himself, apparently a trait he had since Varic knew him,  no. He demanded, nay ordered Keolith to investigate. I’m sure they have people already looking at it but…from what Throgan has said to me, Queen Ironbeard still has a long way to go to get her people on a new track and going to the surface and across country would be the least of her worries.

Keolith’s title was originally intended to just be political. Something to help bridge the gap between the elves and us for the sake of the marriage. A Gillie and a Warden sounds better than a Gillie and random Goliath who came down from the mountains and is now our protector…

I didn’t think his role would mean anything, not intentionally. I tried to give him menial tasks, token efforts. One was the sudden appearance of an old woman that the twins took in to look after but she turned out to be a ware-bear and managed to infect Glory…Honestly, I really did think the girls had just sent for their grandmother or something but apparently I hit the nail on the head. She wasn’t related to them at all.

Keo is taking the task seriously, which I respect, but how on earth does he end up in these situations. It was just meant to be a simple task to find out about an old woman…how I was meant to know she was a bear? And Glory, he was acting weird before he got infected. Sometimes I don’t think he’s all there. He spent a good few minutes staring at my dog through the crack in the door…

Amana seems to have faith in him. For whatever reason, the ‘barmaid’ has invited one of her friends has joined Keo’s troupe. How she did that I have no idea. Some have told me he’s a child who lives in hedges, others say he’s a wise old druid. All I know he was in the village one moment, and left with the group the next. What’s even stranger is that Frobisher has informed me that I’m to receive my advertising cut as soon as the first unit is sold because of him…What is a ‘unit’ and what in all the heavens is an ‘advertising cut’? This must be Amana’s doing. She is up to something, she must be manipulating Glory somehow although she has Varic completely fooled.

Speaking of Varic, his ‘favourite’ customer Alderon has apparently had a run in with errant ley-magic. I could swear before he left he was looking rosy cheeked, had stopped drinking alcohol, stopped taking drugs and was almost vicious in the way he’s taken to eating breakfast… If he wasn’t a man I would swear he was pregnant.

It doesn’t look like we’ll be having any other babies soon. Serenna and Haldir are no more, due to what I believe is Dathwhen’s personal library. There is no way that that baker Pancakes would know one ounce of poetry but he managed to butter up Serenna to the point she left Haldir. I knew something was wrong, well for a while. Haldir’s been down, quiet and from what I heard, tried to top himself. At least he was going self inflict harm, the last time he lost self control due to emotions, he was arrested for multiple counts of murder. It must hurt looking at her everyday but at least he’s not left. I have no idea what we would do without him for food and such. I think we’re going to need a few extra sessions. He’s apparently looking a bit pale and a little colder to people, although he’s taken to gardening as seriously as he does with farming

Flin’s managed to get Birdam to reinforce the chicken coops so that our resident swamp thing won’t keep eating Haldir’s stock. That lizard is a menace to anything smaller than himself and half edible. Flin’s been quiet recently. I don’t know if there is anything else going on his mind right now but I am concerned. I’ve heard rumours that he’s heard from an old flame, someone who didn’t come to Fair Harbour with him. He’s never really seemed to be the type to tie himself down like that. I wonder what changed?

Apart from that polymorphed one and Jack we’ve seen hide nor hair of either orc tribe. Nightstalkers were possibly  part of those that went south who Keolith encountered and constantly raved on about. We’ve now had to fortify Fair Harbour with Elven wardings which was a task in itself… It was all a little disconcerting even a few months back. There is usually at least one raid every couple of months. I wouldn’t expect a word from the Razerbacks; too far north to even venture down. The same things goes for the gnolls. They’ve attacked once in months…where are they getting their food from? The new wards, walls and towers should protect us no matter what comes our way but will we really need it? Why haven’t we been attacked?

It may be due to our allies. Our peace treaty with the Centaurs has finally branched out into their alliance network of Pixies and Sprites. They are as concerned about the state of the forest as anyone, even more so than the elves the say. I had heard they had some sort of agreement to stay out of each other’s way but I didn’t believe they were so different. Queen Titania is nothing like I would have thought and her constant advances on pretty much anything that moves makes me a little unsettled. That and the apparent abundance of open leylines the fae have been researching / exploiting.

Their wings no longer leave fairy dust behind, but a faint trail of ley magic. They are either immune, are able to wield it, or  beyond saving. To see twenty, maybe thirty leylines actively cross each other, churning the earth into fractals of small cliffs and plateaus. I had to be pushed over the bridge into their encampment. I didn’t believe that they were protected but I seem to be fine for the moment.

It seems stupid to mention the swinging axe over all of us. The corruption hasn’t spread further as far as I know. It possibly can now reach all over the forest due to hitching a ride on the leylines but for the time being it’s best not to even think about it.

So with Keolith, Glory, Alderon and the bush-child all headed north to investigate the old Dwarven ruins, its Kevlannan and the Elves that has me seriously concerned. To the south of us, I hear he, Verthica, Flin and Dathwhen are on a dire rescue mission.  When Anrundiel was taken ill, it was assumed that if the worst came to the worst, his daughter Nerivaris, Kevlannan’s betrothed, would take over.

The Chief began to suffer from horrific nightmares after his return. These apparently spilled into Yuirwood, knocking every elf out, or at least so it was thought. A child had seen it all. Nerivaris has been kidnapped by witches from a human folk tale…the three sisters who murdered their family for their goddess…or perhaps they are a coven for a dark version of Angharad… Apparently the four of them are heading back to Verthica’s home, so hopefully he can be left there. Luckily Haldir hasn’t noticed the dwindling chicken stocks, well not yet…

The elves aren’t saying as to why the Chief is not heading up Yuirwood. I would have expected him to make a full recovery. Windswept Flower would have taken over responsibilities as the only relation to the old High Priestess but she was never called. It would only make sense that he was alright but why no word, who the heck is in charge now?

If Keolith’s group can secure an alliance with the Dwarves I do not know what I would do. That bi-monthly trade route could become weekly, twice weekly. We’d have trade, and visitors, Serenna’s shop will be constantly busy and Varic’s tavern will hopefully be full. That’s if Varic doesn’t chuck every Dwarf out first. And with the leadership of Yuirwood under question and their future under threat, I can only hope that Kevlanna’s group is able to restore order and save Nerivaris’ life.

I feel powerless again…

~ Nancy Patricia Cromwell – Mayor of Fair Harbour


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