Author Topic: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig  (Read 17511 times)

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Stratovarius

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Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« on: October 27, 2008, 08:51:01 PM »
It was dank and dark in the caverns of Marleath, and the muttering and chittering from the undead creatures lining the walls created a dim echo that fled from cave to cave and room to room, reverberating down the tunnels and creating the harsh noise that all amongst the living learned to ignore, to put out of their minds. For when a man or woman reached the age of 50, they would be brought to one of the many ritual chambers that dotted the city and surrounding areas of Marleath, and upon their birthday they would be slain, to rise again as a mindless servitor to the lords of the Dread Caverns. Those of suitable nobility or skill would be given a greater role in their next life, perhaps a lieutenant in the army or a new-born priest in the service of the dead god. A select few would even be granted that pinnacle of undeath, and retain their knowledge and their skills as a born-again lich, invited into the ruling council of the Dread Caverns, and engaged in the power games that wracked the eternal lords.

Those among the living who served Marleath were divided at a young age, taken from their breeder parents and given into the cold and heartless care of certain intelligent undead, who would teach and prepare the children for their appropriate task in the great necrotic machine of Marleath. Many of the least intelligent were taken to the mines and the tunnels, constantly forced to dig and build and carve the heavy, heartless stone of the caverns. They would be worked until they died, and then transformed into zombies and skeletons, idiot creatures that could work yet longer hours. Those with a special spark were gifted into the ranks of the defenders, the undead taskmasters, or the ritual-bound priests. Once drafted, those children would be trained and forced and beaten and abused until they had learned all that was necessary for their given duties. From the age of fifteen, they would take up those duties and carry the weight until their death upon their fiftieth birthday.

Two of those twisted creatures stood together in a quiet side cavern, one a priest, the other a holy defender, a special warrior blessed by the priests with some of their foul god's magics. They were that most rare of things, a pair of brothers who had survived the selection process and both been chosen as gifted children. Now in their second decade of service to the crown of Ve Angau, they looked to recover what had been lost to them long ago.


[spoiler]This is the official game thread for the Cult of the Damned. IC chatter only please. Feel free to plot and scheme and plan things.

A minor note: Ritualists are the priestly class down here, or at least mixed in equally with clerics and others.[/spoiler]
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Nanshork

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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2008, 12:08:56 AM »
Borloth watches the entrance to the cavern, twitching slightly.  His head tilts to one side, then the other as he listens to things audible only to him.  He mutters something under his breath angrily and slices his hand through the air in front of him. 

He then starts to talk softly, almost as if to himself.
"I want....something.  I want....blood.  The blood of my enemies....the blood of my mother.  Mother dearest, how you shall pay for the twisty turny pathways that my mind has become.  Oh, but some of the pathways are so fun, so full of gleeful pain and misery.  But that can wait, perhaps I'll have forgotten by tomorrow.  Let tomorrow be tomorrow, what shall we do today my brother?"
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #2 on: October 28, 2008, 11:48:20 AM »
Regema flips lazily through a religious text, sighing with the increasing monotony of his existence.  A moment after his brother's query Regema slams the book shut.

"Something else... that's all I care about anymore.  I'd kill your harlot mother given the chance, but I don't know where she is.  It also chafes me that we be bound to the service of these fat, lazy puppets mindlessly blabbering their dogma. Perhaps it's time to begin the journey we've been preparing for.  We would leave this place and never return, sow our influence and then reap a nation."  Regema says broodingly.  He had gathered supplies and equipment for a journey for some time now, and was itching to put them to use.

"If we were to leave, we would likely not be welcome in Marleath any longer.  Clashing with tradition is one thing, but our father's weakness may be taken as our own, and our bodies will become drudges... an insulting death if there ever was one.  Perhaps it's time to go into the lands of the living... it's so much easier to reanimate that which was recently alive afterall.  Furthermore, if this ancient empire I've read so much about was as vast as the books tell then there must be artifacts of great power remaining from that era.  Given that we cannot simply ask for any our own lords might have, we may yet be able to take those of another..."

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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2008, 06:30:20 PM »
Shudders at the mention of drudges.

"I will NOT be a drudge.  And dogma?  If I want to hear blabbering I listen to the voices, except sometimes the voices are actually useful.  Leaving would work, leaving is good." 
Borloth chuckles softly.  "Perhaps someone would try and bring us back so I could kill them.  Power is good.  Power is....useful.  We need something useful.  We need to leave.  This place is closing in on us, it is trying to kill us!"
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2008, 05:30:54 PM »
[spoiler]Feel free to plot out where you wish to go, and ask me OOC any questions you have in regards to the setting and what might be an appropriate area.[/spoiler]
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2008, 10:39:09 AM »
"Don't worry, brother.  We won't die nameless in some obscure pit,"  Regema says in the closest voice he ever got to that of a comforting brother, and then he continues with his thinking aloud.  "It may be a little too early to leave Marleath entirely.  Perhaps we could journey around the inside of our borders for a while, finding tasks that would earn us some followers and money.  We may even go with the blessing of this forsaken hole if we acted like good little subservients and told them where we were going first.  Once we gained some ground, that would be the time to move on to other lands and truly raise some hell."

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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2008, 05:01:33 PM »
Borloth starts to calm down.  "You always did know best brother.  Did you have anywhere in mind to go, or are we to wander until we have 'earned' our right to leave?"  He thinks for a moment then says, "I'll be able to keep myself under control for as long as necessary, I'm sure you have some sort of a plan and I won't let myself ruin it."
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2008, 09:53:48 AM »
"No, brother, it already is our right to leave.  It would be much easier to make our way outside Marleath if we take the opportunity to gather followers from inside it's borders... followers who are already accustomed to our ways and can help us bring others to our side when we leave these caves."  Regema then thinks for a moment, pondering possible methods to appear legitimate in his intentions when he leaves the border...

[spoiler]Is it normal for priests in Marleath to move to other nations and attempt to spread their 'religion'?  Is there otherwise any feasible explanation for a priest to travel to other parts of Marleath or outside the nation?  Also, how valuable is peace to Marleath itself?  If we go out and start making trouble in other nations, will Marleath disavow us or attack us alongside the other nation?[/spoiler]

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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2008, 03:16:32 PM »
[spoiler]Marleath is a fairly twisted society, in many ways bent back in on itself. It is the only kingdom in Arhosa that exists underground, and the exact area of its spread is not even known to most of the Marleath population. It is generally insular, although violently so. It does not maintain any sort of diplomatic contact with any other country, although most of them are at least generally aware of its existence. The primary form of contact is raiding small towns and villages from hidden underground passageways, stealing the living population at night to transform them into skeletons and zombie labourers.

Marleath will always disavow knowledge, regardless of whether it authorized the raid or not. If it thinks it can gain from supporting the raid, it will. If it does not, it may kill the participants so they can speak of nothing. The kingdom is sprawling, and there is much petty infighting in the kingdom, although any major attempts that threaten the structure are crushed by the ruler, who controls far more of the undead than any other family. It is assumed that there is some artefact or something that allows him to control the near limitless hordes of undead.

Marleath has no interest in ruling the upper lands, instead preferring to spread wider and wider through the caverns of the earth and steal breeding stock and servants from the surface. However, because of the deep and dark caverns and twisting passages, counterattacks from the sundwellers are almost unheard of.

Overall, it would be either on a raid or on your personal choice to leave Marleath. If you succeed, not too bad. If you fail? They'll probably try and kill you.[/spoiler]
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #9 on: October 31, 2008, 06:49:54 PM »
Borloth nods.  "Just tell me what you need me to do, and I'll try not to kill anybody unless I absolutely have to."  He laughs at that, laughs long and loud.
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #10 on: November 02, 2008, 01:00:50 AM »
Regema grins at his brother's psychosis, "Well, if that's how you feel about it then maybe we should gather a raiding party and do a little preparation for our departure under the guise of collecting new slaves.  Let us go to the 'master' and see what he thinks about us participating in some of these expeditions."

[spoiler]Are there any savage subterranean races or monsters like orcs or trolls or whatnot living around where we are now, and are they commonly tapped for slaves like the surface dwellers?[/spoiler]

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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2008, 01:26:38 AM »
Borloth regains his grip upon himself and nods.  "We need our own slaves anyway.  If nothing else, you need sacrifices."
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #12 on: November 03, 2008, 04:42:26 PM »
[spoiler]Are there any savage subterranean races or monsters like orcs or trolls or whatnot living around where we are now, and are they commonly tapped for slaves like the surface dwellers?[/spoiler]

[spoiler]There are a few monstrous races in the underground, but they've been driven from any cavern that Marleath uses, and are considered inferior to the humanoid races that are the general population. As such, as they are treated like animals: killed if encountered, otherwise just locked out. They are not used as animated slaves or warriors.[/spoiler]
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #13 on: November 05, 2008, 07:27:57 AM »
"It's settled, then.  Lets go see about 'exploring' the surface."  Regema says matter-of-factly, heading from the side cavern they were in towards the temple where the head priest is.

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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #14 on: November 05, 2008, 08:07:22 AM »
Borloth follows Regema, letting him lead the way.
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #15 on: November 05, 2008, 05:53:05 PM »
The two men head down through a dark passageway, casually brushing aside the zombies and skeletons who are at work repairing a collapsing tunnel, even clubbing one to the ground when it moves too slowly to get out of their way. Their strides carry them into an open cavern, with buildings carved from the floor. These are rough and low, caged around with undead guards. It is one of the breeding pens, and the crying of babies and of women in pain ricochets off of the cavern, a never-ending spike of sound.

They quickly pass onwards, travelling through more passages and caverns, before arriving at the home of the priests. Detained by the guards for a suitable length of time, they are eventually lead into a room with the Seneschal, not the High Priest himself. It is a clear message that they are currently not important.
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #16 on: November 07, 2008, 01:41:34 AM »
Borloth looks around the room for threats.  Once he has decided that he is safe, he looks to Regema for direction.
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #17 on: November 07, 2008, 10:07:12 AM »
His soreness about his current station jabbed by his treatment despite his service here and, especially, his birthright, Regema somehow manages to greet the Seneschal without utter contempt in his voice.  "Our thanks for meeting with us without notice, but my brother and I have been discussing our future in this place.  To get to the point, we would like to see a little of the surface world.  Work out our skills somewhat and gain a broader base of experience so that we may be of better service to our nation..." Regema mentally completes that sentence with by replacing you fools.  "I feel the time for us to gather slaves of our own is now, such that we might contribute more than simply being another mouth for preaching dogma.  My brother and I have even collected necessary equipment that may be of use in such a venture already."

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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #18 on: November 07, 2008, 05:03:25 PM »
Slaves of your own, you say? That is a rather interesting concept, and a novel one, coming from you. Very well, we will consider it. You may remain seated until such time as we feel it necessary to contact you.

The Seneschal departs the room, leaving the two brothers to sit as commanded. Another clear insult, but there is little they can do. Those who are above oppress those who are not. There is no food or drink in the room, and it is cold and damp, infected with the chill of the earth. A dark fireplace, empty of wood, mocks them from its place against the wall, a reminder of the heat that could be theirs. They wait for much of the clock, perhaps six hours, before the Seneschal returns, glancing at each one before speaking to a spot on the far wall, above their heads.

You are commanded to gather undead servants and acceptable corpses, in quantity of no less than one hundred. We will choose half of them to be given as a tithe to our Patriarch, Ve Angau, and you may use the half we do not. You have four weeks to collect these objects and return. You may leave.

He stares at them expectantly.
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Re: Addoliad chan 'r Cyfrgolledig
« Reply #19 on: November 08, 2008, 10:02:01 AM »
Regema stands from his seat, the chill in the room keeping his temper in check, although not his boldness.  "I expected we would join with an existing expedition, but this is a task I am confident shall be of no trouble.  That said, we would require some tools for this task we assumed would be part of any raid already.  I admit that I am not yet capable of making 100 dead walk, so a beast of burden, preferably alive, and a wagon will be needed to carry the remainder back with us.  Further, this being our first expedition, we would require a guide or a map to lead us to the surface and to the nearest town from the caves."  Regema allows a slight smirk, genuinely pleased that he would get to put his studies into practice, genuinely pleased that he was already being underestimated, and also testing the Seneschal's reaction, just in case he wasn't so unconcerned as he acted.

[spoiler]Dice rolls?[/spoiler]