Seekers of the Misty Isle

A Letter From Afghairon Redleaf
Seekers of the Misty Isle

Wyrmwood

New Silverymoon

Year 2014

Day 182

Dear Elven Expedition,

My brethren, allow me to introduce myself. I am Archmage Afghairon Redleaf, Arcane Protector and High Guardian of the Elves within Wyrmwood. I have lived through 4 generations of our people, and I can tell all of you, that the atrocities upon all of us, are not without hope. If there is any good to be made of these times, it is this: Unity. Look around you, all of our people, here, together and staring into the eyes of adversity; face to face with which that would cause us doom. And we are not blinking an eye.

500 years ago, I was a young man attending university. I asked one of my professors about the meaning of life, as most of you have. He told me something that I have not forgotten to this very day. The meaning of life, is this: Life without a sense of community, and life that is at war with each other, is doomed to fail. We as elves, as a whole, were not at war with each other physically, but we were at war with each other in ideals and philosophy.

The sylvan elves regarded themselves as superior because they had a greater reverence of nature. The high elves regarded themselves as superior because they were the most numerous among us. The gray elves regarded themselves as superior because of their heightened intellect. The aquatic elves regarded themselves superior because they were not limited to a life upon the land. The avariel regarded themselves superior because they took to a life of the sky. Where has any of that superiority led any of us?

While I weep for the fallen, I can’t help but smile as I look upon all of you. This is the most beautiful thing I could imagine on my 600th birthday; all of us here, together. One people… one place… one goal. The Seldarine have blessed us all, this day, in that we can reflect upon life, love, and the future.

The end of my time on this Oerth is near. Soon I shall be walking the forests of Arvandor. We are thankful for the inhabitants of Wyrmwood to allow us to call Wyrmwood home, and allow us to found New Silverymoon. However, we are still guests here, and as the humans say, “There is no place like home.”

What will our home be? Will it be here? Or will it be the place that was lost to us since our beginnings as a people? Our elven duty is to seek the Misty Isle. A land that runs water so pure that one sip will sate all thirst. A land that grows grains so rich, that a handful could make a loaf. A land so innocent, that evil cannot step upon it without being overcome with grief.

Our home shall be there. We have a new generation of seekers of the Misty Isle. And we will give them all of the love, care, and equipment needed to finally report success in its location. And I know that my life will come to an end fulfilled, and received with open arms in Arborea amongst our Seldarine.

We are no longer going to write elven history. We will, from now on, be writing elven future!

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Arvenadven's Journal Entry #1
Seekers of the Misty Isle

Elven Expedition

Seekers of the Misty Isle

Archive 1, Journal Entry 1

Year 2014, Day 189

I, Arvenadven Trafdureth, Paragnostic Scholar for the Paragnostic Assembly, shall be recording our adventure in this diary for the permanent record.

We said our last goodbyes. Archmage Afghairon Redleaf, prior to our departure, gave each of us a satchel, and wish us well. Our druid, Jharak Greensleeves, along with his wolf, seemed very well at ease navigating through the forest. His look of confidence was reassuring. I shall consult him frequently. I believe I could learn a lot from his powers of divine spellcasting.

I have to admit, I was a bit surprised that a noblewoman, a Princess, no less; apparently of a Nymph Queen somewhere in Wyrmwood - and a Wood Elf Nobleman; is accompanying us. She appears to be a devout Paladin. _Content Not Found: amaik-woodsoul_ is her name, and indeed she is very pleasing to the eye - but then you see massive amount of muscle she has. What was in her milk as an infant?

We have a Ranger among us, at least he is a woodsman with a bow. I don't know of his knowledge of nature as of yet. But it can't be that great. His name is Elwin Luvare, and I have come to know that he has applied to be amongst the Order of the Bow. I hope he can use it. His fantasies about cupcakes are making me wonder what type of traumatic brain injury he has received in his younger days; possibly falling out of a tree and landing on his head.

A fellow gray elf is among us. Tragedy is his background. He was of the noble cast in the High Forest, of which we all know now has fallen, utterly, to the Horde of Orcs; they simply go by the Horde I am told. His name is Arin'Cael Iaikae'Utulien. His father was a wizard. Yet he hasn't displayed any of the arcane arts as of yet - he claims that his father teleported him away during the Orcish Invasion that befell the High Forest. The Teleport spell went awry, as could be expected. I couldn't imagine the horrors witnessed that day. I dare not to. He has spent the better part of his coming of age in a continent he has called Rokugan. Foreign soil indeed. I know it will be an interesting geography lesson from him. I shall consult with him about it later on in our travels together.

We all began to look into our satchels. Mostly, and seriously, mundane survival equipment. Everything from hot climate survival gear, to cold climate survival gear. There was, however, a map on a scroll within one of our satchels. I used Amanuensis to scribe that map into this diary. Our druid gave a very accurate description of our location relative to this map.

I came to the conclusion that the best place to start our journey, is to travel to a place called Avalon. It is a mageocracy and the libraries have to be vast. That may make our druid a little uneasy, but as the humans say, "You can't make an omelet without breaking some eggs." Journeys begin with a first step, and ours should be there.

We happened upon some merry satyrs. They offered us wine and food. They sang. They danced. They also played the most beautiful song about the Misty Isle I have ever heard in my entire life. I implored that he write that song into this diary as sheet music, and he did so with pride. Music such as that, just has to be written down. Others need to hear of it.

Things began to get a little weird. Apparently the alcohol was getting to everyone. Satyrical hedonism began to shine through like a sunrise in the forest. That was our queue to leave. I did give them an empty leather scrollcase to... use.

We have made a brief encampment to take a breather, and to prepare for reverie. I can only hope we can find out some good information at Avalon. May the Seldarine be with us in our journey.




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Arvenadven's Journal Entry #2
Seekers of the Misty Isle

Elven Expedition

Seekers of the Misty Isle

Archive 1, Journal Entry 2

Year 2014, Day 195

We have all been traveling for a week. The city of Avalon that should be just over the horizon never seems to appear. We are nearly out of conversation amongst us. I have spoke with great length with my gray elven companion. A week ago he mentioned he spent the past couple of decades in a far away empire called Rokugan. So, we talked in great length about what had happened to him and how he survived such a foreign place.

Elves, in Rokugan, are almost non-existent. There may be some travelers here and there, but they are not native to that region. There are, however, spirit-folk; which are distant cousins of fey, and there are a bizarre race of shapchangers called the Hengeyokai - forgive my spelling if it is wrong. They can take on the aspect of an animal, yet are not cursed by lycanthropy. Fascinating to say the least. Perhaps one day, when this is all over, I could visit that place. What knowledge that is unknown to us, that they would have.

I believe, if we ever get there, the first thing I shall do when we arrive in the city of Avalon, is find out if they have a Paragnostic Assembly there, and then start researching as much as I can while I am there. If my organization is not represented there, then I must hit up a library and begin research there. I cannot depend on anyone else here for assistance. Even though Arin'Cael is extremely bright minded, his intelligence is geared for combat - a total waste in my opinion. Such a beautiful mind; reduced to mere tactics on a battlefield or back alley.

I absolutely must succeed in finding at least a hint of where to truly begin our journey. Failure is not an option. Our people depend on me. I will not fail us.

May the Seldarine bless my mind, and grant me great insight for the benefit of our people.




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Arvenadven's Journal Entry #3
Seekers of the Misty Isle

Elven Expedition

Seekers of the Misty Isle

Archive 1, Journal Entry 3

Year 2014, Day 195

If I make it out of here alive, I swear I am going to sap the strength and agility out of Elwin so he learns from this mistake!

After traveling, as I stated in my last journal entry, we came upon some dead brethren. Four to be exacted. They were skinned, and drawn out as if they were wild game. No way for an elf to die. I examined their remains, and as close as I could determine it, they died of severe blunt forced trauma. Several cuts and tears and fractures of bones were all over the bodies. The bodies had to be several days old.

We were able to find their encampment, and a large pile of fecal matter was there. While inspecting their camp, I cast Detect Magic to find any presence of it. There was... inside the pile of feces.

After I cast Create Water on the pile of dung to soften it up and wash away as much as I can, I used a stick and found the source of magic emanation. It was a very elaborate silver ring. I washed it off and cleaned it further and found it to possibly be a signet ring. I presented it to _Content Not Found: amaik-woodsoul_ to see if she could recognize any house or organization it could represent. She did know it to be of a gray elven house that is reknown for their arcane magic ability. I put it onto my finger for safe keeping. I will ensure it returns to them. That is the least I can do for our dearly departed. Killed, eaten, but not forgotten.

Our druid was able to speak with his animal companion, to look for any tracks that aren't elven of nature. The wolf found some. They went straight south and ended in a dead tree. This enraged the druid, seeing a dead tree like this. He examined the tree and noticed something was odd about it. Her Highness slashed at it with her sword, but it went through it. I looked at it in a different way, thinking of it to be some sort of illusion, and it was. The illusion was covering up a portal or gate!

I began inspecting the gate, and noticed there to be runes of a language I do not personally know, but it looked like Abyssal. I cast Comprehend Languages and I was able to determine that it was indeed Abyssal, and there were four runes: Avalon, New Avalon, Newport, and Rome. Those are names of cities! Demons were using this gate, in our forest, to transport themselves to these locations!

I told the party all of this. I explained to them that this language is evil, this portal is evil, built by evil people, connected to locations for evil intent. I also told them that by speaking the location and entering the portal, you may not know exactly where you would end up. It is beyond my knowledge at this time on how to truly manipulate a portal of demonic nature.

Elwin went through the portal. What an idiot! I just told him... the druid and his wolf went next. I am surrounded by idiots. Not wanting them to be left alone the Seldarine only know where, I felt no choice but to follow. I appeared in a wasteland, with only the Druid, his wolf, my donkey, and shortly after, my gray elven friend - Arin'Cael.

Looking at the landscape, the skies above, the ground below, I tried to remember what I learned in University about other planes. This, along with the fact there were multiple suns overhead, might possibly be The River Styx, the Outer Plane that is connected to all other evil planes, including the Abyss. THE ABYSS! Beloved Seldarine, me and two of my companions are near THE ABYSS! Elwin and Princess Amaik are nowhere to be seen. It is obvious, the portal split our expedition up.

I know that we need to get out of here immediately. We do not belong here. I drew some messages into the ground; my well wishes to my family; and with my knowledge of the planes, I helped Jharak determine the location of west. All three of us are heading into that direction. I know the River Styx flows into more planar locations. I just hope we can bypass any demons, devils, or yugoloths on our way out of this place, which is nigh impossible. All evil outsiders utilize this plane to get to other planes. Are we doomed?

I hope whomever finds this journal, tells my loved ones back in New Silverymoon, that I love them very much. Let them know I died for a good cause, and that my companions also died for a good cause. If only the stupid archer didn't just blindly go through. If only idiots would listen to people that know better. I should not have followed him. We should not have followed him. Seldarine forgive us for the decisions we made.




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Arvenadven's Journal Entry #4
Seekers of the Misty Isle

Elven Expedition

Seekers of the Misty Isle

Archive 1, Journal Entry 4

Year 2014, Day 195

We stopped for a rest and we are lost. Not just in direction, but in our mission, our duty, and our fellowship. How could things have come to this? Restudying my spellbook, I can now understand some of the advanced writing that was contained within. I have one spell that can perhaps gives us a brief respite from this horrid place. I can cast Rope Trick. It will provide us with an extradimensional space, which we could set up a tent and proper bedding, and need not worry about being spotted or molested within the time frame. I also remember if I cast the spell multiple times in succession, I could increase the duration of which the spell lasts.

There are plants that are completely foreign to us here. Even a blade of grass appears to be an actual blade that bends itself towards us. Such an evil place.

I can take this small amount of time to reflect on things up until this point. I believe, this all may be my fault. I had become so focused on arcane knowledge that I neglected my divine knowledge. The Seldarine are punishing me for that. That is the only rational explanation I can come up with. I shall not neglect my divine knowledge and abilities any longer. I know I can do a little of both without sacrificing the other. I just need to practice a little longer. I can overcome this problem of mine. I will not anger the Gods any longer. Look where it put us; The River Styx.

I can almost cry. I am feeling overwhelmed with dread. Is there any reason to go on? Is there indeed light at the end of this tunnel? I am looking at my companions and I can not help but feel slightly responsible for all of this. Had I not meddled with the demonic gate in the first place, none of this would have happened.

Can this be the end?




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Arvenadven's Journal Entry #5
Seekers of the Misty Isle

Elven Expedition

Seekers of the Misty Isle

Archive 1, Journal Entry 5

Year 2014, Day 195

I think, I may have an idea of how to get out of here. I am way over my head with this. I am so uncertain this would work. But I think I remember something about one extradimensional space reacting with another extradimensional space.

I would hate to try to carry out this experiment...

Plan:

1. Create Extradimensional Space using Rope Trick

2. Open a Bag of Holding within the Extradimensional Space

Possible Outcome:

1. Reaction from the two spaces projects us into the Astral Plane.

2. We are blown to pieces.

3. Bag of Holding and Rope Trick counteract each other.

4. Nothing.

Astral Plane Scenario:

1. We see a mercury colored pool of our native plane, in this case, the Prime Material Plane. We dive into the pool, and we go back to our home plane of existence.

2. We encounter whomever inhabits the Astral Plane. From my teachings about the Underdark, the mortal enemies of the Illithid are the Githyanki, and I believe they live on the Astral Plane. But most of them are evil too, if I recall correctly.

3. I think time stands still there, so we wouldn't age or anything. We are stuck on the Astral Plane forever, or until we find a way out, but at least we won't have to worry about natural causes of death while doing so.

If we can't find a way off the the Outer Plane, in this case, the River Styx, we are doomed. I would rather take my chances in a neutral plane of "God knows what," than an evil plane of "Oh God, Now What?"

Whenever I get the nerve to tell my companions about our options... I will tell them. I think everything within 10 feet of a rift in extradimensional space is sucked into the Astral Plane. My Seldarine, I just don't know. I am too young for this. I simply don't have the expertise or the knowledge to really know what I am doing. I don't belong here. I am not supposed to be here. This was not supposed to happen.




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Arvenadven's Journal Entry #6
Seekers of the Misty Isle

Elven Expedition

Seekers of the Misty Isle

Archive 1, Journal Entry 6

Year 2014, Day 195

I needed to make another entry and write down my thoughts before I lose control of myself.

I feel so alone. Even though I am with others, the demonic gateway splitting us apart has really bothered me. Whenever I speak, no one listens. Why are most people incapable of rational thought. I addressed everyone the same, I did not play favorites, and I did the best I could. Elwin, that bastard, blindly walking through as if I did not say a word.

If you do not know something, damn it, listen to those that do.




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Arvenadven's Journal Entry #7
Seekers of the Misty Isle

Elven Expedition

Seekers of the Misty Isle

Archive 1, Journal Entry 7

Year 2014, Day 196

After hours and hours of walking, all of us needed to take a break. Jharak said he would keep watch while the rest of us slept. When we awoke, however, there was no sign of him. Not even his wolf, Hank. In a panic, we searched around, but he was nowhere. We looked around for signs of a struggle, there was none. He simply vanished.

Arin'Cael and I set off in the direction (at least hoped to be) previously and kept our eyes open for Jharak. We did not find Jharak at all, however, some things found us.

A huge demon, looked like a giant toad with a humanoid shaped body, a couple of Vrocks (I actually remembered what those looked like) and about a dozen Manes, and a Nelfeshnee. I was so terrified I couldn't even scream. After some extremely small conversation, in elvish of all things, they gave us a choice, go with them to see their master, or be eaten by the manes. As if that were any of a choice; more like implied consent.

After walking for hours and hours, as soon as we thought we could not walk any longer, we all arrived at a small fortified encampment. We were met with a Succubus, who was being carried by Dretches. The horrors that I had hoped only to read about, I am literally witnessing with my own eyes. I did learn through conversation that they apparently all serve the Demon Prince Graz'zt. As to be expected, we were taken to a dungeon and locked into a cell.

In the dungeon we met a very attractive female gray elf, and Jharak and his wolf Hank. Blessed be the Seldarine that we are together again (at least). I started asking the lady about whom she was and how she got into this place, and apparently, she is connected to the party of dead elves that we came across in Wyrmwood. She went through the same portal we did, and ended up in the same place we did. Strange coincidence I must say.

In her possession was a scroll; a scroll she said that Jharak had on him when he was brought in here. It was inside of a corked bottle. I took it out and read it; it stated that there is a portal to the Prime Material Plane (our plane) on a sandbar in the middle of the River Styx, south of this encampment. I decided to cast Amanuensis on this scroll, for record keeping purposes in this journal.

After learning about her companions, she cried a little. I showed her the ring I had found, and she told me it belonged to a wizard named Uthlien. Apparently by speaking a command word, I could summon the Magical Assistance Construct (MAC) for short. It was a construct that was created and bonded to the signet ring as a lab assistant for Uthlien.I thanked her very much for the information, and I told her that I would return the ring upon our arrival in New Silverymoon. Of course, we needed to get back into Wyrmwood first.

The lady prisoner told us she knew of a boat race that was going to take place on the River Styx in honor of Demon Prince Graz'zt. Putting two and two together - if we could use one of those boats, we could get onto that sandbar, and get out of here. I spoke the command word, and indeed, a construct appeared, and after a minute of conversation, I asked MAC to cut away the bars so that we could all escape. MAC did so with flying colors. I released his summons back into the ring, and we all made our escape.

Blessed Seldarine, I do not know how we snuck out of the encampment without notice, but we did. Until, we arrived in the boat. There was a Vrock sleeping(?) inside the boat. We roused him with our noise, but before he could act upon us, Arin'Cael somesaulted between his legs, stabbed him from behind with his dagger, and Ama'oro (female gray elf) unsheathed her rapier and stabbed him through an eye. Death was instantaneous; must have pierced his brain. After a moment of awe and astonishment at our dear lady friend, we rolled the dead demon out of the boat. I used Mage Hand to take a sample of the water in the River Styx with an empty antitoxin vial I had. Who knows what knowledge could be gained from it. Arin'Cael, with surprising proficiency, steered the boat toward our portal home.

As if this was all supposed to happen, we sailed without incident down the River Styx, and we did bottom out on the appropriate sandbar. We could see the portal. Without hesitation, we all jumped to our freedom.

When our vision became clear, and our bodies manifested back onto the proper plane, we saw our other two companions; Elwin and _Content Not Found: amaik-woodsoul_. I introduced everyone to Ama'oro, and all of us decided to take a seat on green grass and breathe clean air. I am truly blessed by our Seldarine. This perhaps was just the right event to get me back in touch with my divine studies.

Thank you Seldarine. I love all of you so much. And thank you for introducing me to the beautiful Ama'oro. I am truly lucky she allowed me to kiss the back of her hand before leaving the cell. Her soft and supple touch - combined with such skill and precision of swordplay - could make a man such as myself... that is for a different type of journal entry.




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Arvenadven's Journal Entry #8
Seekers of the Misty Isle

Elven Expedition

Seekers of the Misty Isle

Archive 1, Journal Entry 8

Year 2014, Day 197

We had taken the rest of that day resting up before heading closer to Avalon. Plus we need to keep an eye on this portal as we do not know what will come through in pursuit of us. I am truly astonished that there are demonic connections in Wyrmwood, and apparently all over our continent. We are stumbling across something pretty drastic and high of magnitude.

I can't rest at the moment. Everytime I attempt reverie I recall the images of the demons we saw. I can't help but smile at certain death we averted; though, how many did not share in our fortune. How many of our people have fallen to these monsters.

By the Seldarine, we have to warn others at New Silverymoon. That portal within Wyrmwood is still open. The demons we escaped will not take kindly to our sudden departure. Oh dear, this could escalate into invasion or at least demonic vengeance. And Ama'oro... she needs protection. She has possibly extremely valuable insight that our superiors will need to know. Yes, we need to get into Avalon as quickly as possible and find a way to send word back to New Silverymoon.




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Arvenadven's Journal Entry #9
Seekers of the Misty Isle

Elven Expedition

Seekers of the Misty Isle

Archive 1, Journal Entry 9

Year 2014, Day 198

After arriving at Avalon, I immediately went to a library to begin researching The River Styx so that I could reaffirm what I already knew. I also assisted Ama'oro with her research, as she (and her former companions) is also looking for the Misty Isle. Arin'Cael stayed with us; gray elves sticking together! The others went to find a way to get Jharak healed of his feeblemindedness.

Hours of research later, we all met back up at the Inn that we agreed to meet at. Allegedly, the others teleported back to Avalon and Jharak was completely naked. Needless to say, a run in with the law and a 50 gold piece fine later, we all did indeed meet back up.

We learned that a "key" to the Misty Isle was rumored to be at an ancient temple to the Orc deity, Gruumsh, that is located in the frozen lands of the north, known as Frostfell. So we would have to make our journey there. I also remembered the portals, and that they are a danger to many. I needed to report this to the authorities. Princess Amaika suggested I speak to the Archmage that they all have been dealing with (concerning the removal of the feeblemindedness of Jharak). This readily perked my interest and we made our way to him.

He did not seem to be bothered with my account, until I mentioned the other connections the gateway had. When I mentioned the portal in Wyrmwood, and the abyssal runes that named Avalon, New Avalon, Newport, and Rome, specifically; He seemed to become very concerned. He asked to scry upon my memories, and I allowed him as such.

After learning all that he needed from my memories, he gaves us all tokens for a temporary stay in Upper City, and a small sack of platinum coins to stay at the Inn of Two Towers - a rather luxurious place. I stated I needed to go to a temple of St. Cuthbert. Arin'Cael decided to go to his room instead and Ama'oro declined - she said she would not feel comfortable going there. The others decided to accompany me. Maybe my gray elven companions know something I do not?

Upon arrival to the Cuthbertine temple, you could feel the tension in the air immediately. I expected this. Their extremely zealous nature and strict comformance to Law and Order make most of us "people of the wood" a little uneasy. I explained that I would like to discuss business with a clergyman. What came out to speak with me was an extremely battle hardened individual with a beard as gray as my eyes. He was very direct and to the point. I followed suit.

First I revealed that I had a sample of the River Styx, and they could perhaps use this for study or for whatever uses they would like. I also told them of my experiences with the portals and of the demons that imprisoned me at the River Styx. Now, this really got his attention. I could literally see his expression change when he heard the word demon. He scried upon my memories, and rewarded this knowledge with divine scrolls. I thanked him for the scrolls (that is what I was really after anyway). And we were all off.

Upon our arrival to the Inn of Two Towers, word came to us all that Arin'Cael was having a party. I respectffully declined. I have a lot of scribing to do. In the meantime, I knocked on the door of Ama'oro. She allowed me entry. I told her that I learned of rumors that her elven house has had dealings with demons in the past (Princess Amaika told me that). She said that yes, there are rumors concerning her house such as that. So I asked if they were true. She said she did not know. I was inclined to believe her. After I apologized for being so inquisitive, she decided to make a revelation. She showed me her true appearance.

She was just as beautiful as she always has been, however her skin tone was slightly more red she had wings. LEATHERY BAT-LIKE WINGS! I was without words. She revealed the truth behind the ancient dealing with demons her house has been rumored to have. I told her that I thank her for the truth, and that it is not my business to spread her business with others. When she feels necessary to reveal such information, then it is up to her to do so. I told her I am just a man that does not like not knowing things, and I really wanted to know who I was talking to. She seemed to understand. I thanked her again, and said I needed to get back to my room. I want to prove to her that I can be a gentleman, and not a person that would take advantage of a vulnerable moment. Although I do sort of wish she asked me to stay - no matter. I have to tend to my prayerbook. There will be time and time again, for other, personal moments.




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