The Journal of TarantianA brief flash of memory from long ago…
Lightning arcs across the sky. I stand atop a large hill, beside a champion leading the great human army that arrays themselves out below me. Hordes of goblins are rushing the defenses, far too numerous to count. The lines are breached. The goblins have the hilltop. My meager defenses are inadequate to accomplish the task at hand. I look down at the spear that pierces my heart, and my vision fades. I know that the fate of this world lies in the balance, and the darkest of paths have become more likely.
Light flashes and I am alone atop a hill that overlooks a vast city on the sea.
… the walk is short, but I know the path ahead is long. I reach the city, Altar, and find a place to take rest. I meet Kovar, an Eladrian warlord with huge proportions. I know this is the champion I have been sent to guide and council. We set off the next day into the wilderness with his traveling companions, in search of great evil…..
… Kovar and I stand in a great wizards tower that overlooks the city of Altar. Kovar, “We return with the shattered medallion of Korthos, Proof that he has returned from the dead” Wizard, “I care not! Korthos’ ambitions was ever small, his plots feeble. Even in undeath he can not harm me or the city of Altar. I will not waste energy on this upstart whose power pales in comparison to mine.” Tarantian, “It is not Korthos that is prophesied to cause the downfall of Altar, but rather his actions is but one link in the chain of this prophesy. His scheme will weaken the bridge between this world and that of the hells.” Wizard, “Pffft, I can not believe that this lowly upstart will have powers to rend the ether between planes. Bring me proof! Otherwise I will not be bothered! My research into the drought is too important to the people of Altar. Kovar and I return to our camp. Our traveling companions are clearly saddened by the news, but we pack head out that evening, heading deep into the Zakarian mountains….
….we stand at the edge of a cliff overlooking the ocean, a demonic gate open a short distance away. Across the bay, the city of Altar is aflame. The wizard’s tower stands no more. The fight is fierce; the defenders number too few. I feel my soul rend by dark magic’s. I gasp my last breath. Few defenders remain. I am on my knees as a demonic image looms over me, a cruel and wicked sword raised high over its head. My last sight is to see Kovar jump through the portal and vanish. Somehow, hope remains….
This time I remember the vision before the sending A minotaur warrior fights heroically, but his path has hidden consequences. The fate of the world, remains unclear. I know my mission, to again guide a great champion. Will I be up to the challenge this time?
This time the push to the material plane is horrific; the force is strong, the speed too fast. My soul begins to fray under the pressure. My vision blurs and becomes dark.''
A bright light; shouts of combat; arrows fly in front of my face. No time to orient myself, a knowledge thoughtbow is rapidly firing arrows from a perch high ledge along one wall of a large room. I realize the champion I’ve been sent to guide and protect stands behind me, axe barred. It is obvious that enemies are already upon us.
I teleport the thoughtbow to us, and he is quickly vanquished by the minotaur and his allies. The battle rages for several minutes, the voidblades and thoughtbows are dispatched, and the group is little worse for the wear.
Just as I think we will get a chance to rest, a teifling with more voidblade minions burst into the room from a door high along the ledge that runs the circumference of the room. One of my new companions shouts from behind me, “There he is, destroy him and take his key.” What key is this? I have little time to ponder as the teifling strikes out with a burst of lightning, bringing several of the party to their knees. I conjure an image of the teifling’s impending doom, but it has little effect on him. The fight is long and bloody, but we are victorious if only by a fraction.
The party steps back from the carnage, all injured and breathing heavily. I glance around at the group, and realize these are not the green recruits, but rather a band of hardened veterans that have seen many fights. They pick themselves up and begin to search the room full of books.
I stand back for a moment, taking in the new surroundings – my head spinning. I feel a strange connection to this minotaur, and not quite at ease. His fate seems uncertain; unclear; unfocused. Will his actions unhinge the world, or save it? I can only hope my guidance will be sufficient this time.