DIARY OF SELIN STORKSOAR
This 12th Day of Ashlae’s 2nd Autumn, 1122
I have been baptized in fire, born into a second life. Two nights past, not long after dusk, the library was engulfed in flame. An infestation of zombies inexplicably manifested in the library’s underspaces. The Death Watch, unconcerned with the numerous and precious texts and tomes there held, set fire to the most vital pillar of our community–our library. It is a loss too great for words, and yet no more than a loss of words.
Covered in the ash of civilization’s collective knowledge, I collapsed not far from the blaze. The immeasurable loss of our library was greater felt in no heart but mine, except, perhaps, Gambil, the library’s chief financial benefactor. He and I embraced before the conflagration, letting our tears mingle like two oceans. Dear Gambil has ever been kind to me and has unfailingly supported my literary endeavors.
Gambil took me into his home and lent me such provisions as I have never known. Glory to Ashlae and her work, but Gambil’s lifestyle and lavishness go well beyond the alms given to humble servants of Ashlae such as me. It is very fine to be in such company. And it appears I shall there remain for yet some time, as I am now a cleric in the service of Gambil’s duly chartered Rays of Knowledge adventurers league! Gambil wasted no time in requesting that I assemble a team of talented individuals ready to rebuild our town’s store of literature.
Our heroes’ tale began in the bowels of a disreputable tavern, the Leaky Chamberpot, where I set out to find Eoin “Twist” Lautaro. He has been helpful a time or two in dealing with my more delicate problems. Remarkably, I quickly found him after briefly conversing with an out-of-place but utterly delightful young couple. As expected, Twist effortlessly rounded up a couple of able-bodied persons. With that managed, I was all too eager to leave the Leaky Bedpan, or whatever that dreadful pub may call itself.
I began toward the Temple when I ran into none other than Astra, a fellow disciple of Ashlae’s teachings. I have long recognized her prized physique and unswerving sense of duty, so I was delighted when she offered to join our group. Her hair smelled faintly of juniper and cedar.
And so our group was formed:
- Twist, cunning and rogueish
- Gaston, brawny and dangerous
- Devika, musically eclectic and downright peculiar
- Astra, lovely and fragrant, and strong, too
- And me, Selin, an intellectual servant of Ashlae
Our merry band of adventurers met with Gambil for dinner. We were presented with a generous charter detailing our mission and obligations to one another. We signed the charter with not insignificant eagerness. We were informed that our first assignment would send us deep into the Boon District of Old Miru in search of an unknown book of potential significance.
Well provisioned, and in a race against the darkness and its attendant unholy horde of undead, we set out of town shortly after daybreak through the gate by the docks. My prior research of the Boon District suggested that a cache of literature could have been located in a small number of residential structures. We quickly found a likely building and investigated.
We entered a dilapidated home, sunken along its southern edge, and found an ominous cellar portal in the northwest corner. But we were waylaid by no less than three monstrous arachnids! Gaston was unimpressively incapacitated for much of the melee, but he was a welcome distraction as the other adventurers and I vanquished our foes with righteous might. We then passed through to the cellar and encountered a mysterious chest. Truly, I have never felt so ALIVE!
Twist carefully examined the chest, which contained four bars of infernal gold, forged in some unimaginable hell, and a tome of abyssal script entitled “The Book of Lies.” By Ashlae’s grace, I magically divined the darkbound book’s magical properties and effects. It was shut by a silver clasp, openable only with a cursed key and a secret phrase. Attempting to open the book without such materials would almost certainly result in the accursed book’s self-destruction. A pity, as its contents would have been a fascinating addition to my mental repositories of lore and history.
We returned the book to Gambil, who cautiously accepted it and granted us a generous sum of gold. So we set out on the town to celebrate. With gold in our pockets and glory in our veins, we feasted at the Matronly Widow, a meal so singular and perfect it inspired a poem I intend to share with its proprietors when next I chance to visit.
Indulge your senses
Best in class, first in service
But Gaston and Devika, philistines as they are, insisted we move our celebration to the Brass Balls. Thereafter, we chanced to see a man in rather unofficial looking armor dragging a young, unkempt girl down a street in the middle of the night. Our interest piqued, we intervened and were met with unwarranted violence. Despite fighting valiantly, I was the victim of an outrageously cheap shot and was incapacitated. My comrades fought bravely on, saving the girl, who exhibited what I can only describe as an eldritch display of force, lashing out against her assailant with what appeared to be ethereal tentacles.
We took her to the Temple and committed her to the compassionate custody of Vicar John, who tells us she does not appear to be imbued with any identifiable magic—good or evil. Puzzling. But we were glad to mend our wounds and rest up in the care of Ashlae and her pupils.
I look forward to a time when I can reflect on this journal entry and be content that it chronicles only the first few moments of a new life filled with unimaginable adventure and boundless knowledge.