What gentle dream?

Gareth: Goblins on a Train

You know a day is gonna be a good one when you walk into your room on the train and there is one beautiful woman already sittin there. Never seen anyone like her though. She can’t be human. No way she can be. Too pale. Her hair is too…whispy. But damn, she’s fine. Her name is Nu. I’ll have to remember that. Not that it’ll be too difficult. She’ll probably stick with me for a while. Apparently she’s lived a pretty sheltered life. Guess I’ll just have to keep a careful eye on her~

We weren’t the only ones on the train. When I say I am surrounded by beautiful people, man do I mean it. Not one of them is unattractive. Whatever gods that exist must have been smilin down on me today. Maybe a little too much. There’s a paladin. His name is Cedric. Not too fond of that. As long as he doesn’t get in my way we should be fine. There were two other women in the hallway. Both gorgeous, but one was waaay more fun than the other. Taz I think her name was. Sharp lady. She seemed pretty quick on her feet. Probably an elf or something judgin by her ears. The other one said her name was Anna I think. Cute. Country girl. I’ve met plenty of those in my lifetime. Young too. I’d be willing to put money on the fact that this is probably her first time away from her farm. This’ll be way too fun.

Apparently she had a friend. I seriously thought his name was Dead. You have got to have the shittiest parents alive for them to name you ‘Dead’. Talk about setting their kid up for failure. Turns out his name was Death. Or Deth. Or whatever. Spelling who cares. Fuckin gorgeous though. Prettiest man I’ve ever seen. He almost seemed not human in how pretty he was. Whatever. There he was sitting next to my fourth favorite thing in the world: food. That train was fuckin great. I don’t think any other train will ever compare.

Any food can be gross when you’re breathin it in though. That train just couldn’t make up its mind. Don’t move, go really fast. La dee fuckin dah. The group started movin. Decided to follow them. Left Anna there to eat. Somethin about her grandma teachin her somethin. Oh right. Creepy little girl with a doll. Gloria she said her name was. I fuckin hate dolls. Creepy as fuck. Anyway.

I couldn’t break down a fuckin door. I couldn’t break down a door. Talk about a blow to the pride. To be fair Taz couldn’t blow it up either. Some useless red haired guy said something about the conductor being trapped behind the door. Not that I gave two shits, but I guess it was his fault the train was goin so goddamn fast so I decided to stick with those guys to figure things out.

And then the screamin started. I could go on about screamin. But this wasn’t good screamin anyway. This was ‘Holy fuck run for your lives there’s somethin on the train’ screamin. Which was still fine by me. Except the nasty things flung shit everywhere. One of em stabbed me in the foot. Taz said what they were but I didn’t really hear her. Something about weird lookin shit goblins. Who cares as long as you can kill em. Cedric was actually pretty fuckin badass. If he keeps this up I might actually like him.

Kill Tally: 1 of those fuckers. Not good enough in my opinion.

We split up after that. Me and Cedric and Nu followed the screaming into a room full of cars. That old guy with the daughter with the creepy doll was there beggin for help. I woulda said fuck him unless there was somethin in it for me, but goody two shoes Cedric had his golden heart moved by his problem so we went to look for the girl. Led us to more of those nasty suckers. Got shot in the shoulder this time. Fuckin shoulder wounds man. Cedric ran to get the girl, I stayed back to do some good ol killin. Nu stayed with me.

Kill Tally: 2 this battle. Total: 3. These things make really nice blood smears.

Went back to return the girl. Gave Cedric her doll. Fuckin great. Now the ugly sonnuvabitch stayed with us. Did I mention that I fuckin hate dolls? Because I do. Creepy bastards. Met back up with everyone else. They had a bell. Apparently they’d been killin things too. They talked. We went back to the conductor’s car. I busted down the door this time (suck it rusty fuckin door) and found myself a room full of them nasty lookin things and their friends. Only this time there was a bigger one with em. Three eyes. Bright blue. Lots of teeth. Just lookin at the ugly fucker gave me the shivers.

Speakin of the ugly fucker, I got a nice friendly electric hug from the nasty thing. Bad move on it’s part. That meant I didn’t have to move to get to it. Started gettin swarmed by the rest of his pals though. Had some backup from Cedric. And then Nu came in. Beautiful, wonderful, nimble, flexible Nu. Stabbed the big nasty fucker in the back. Nothin more thrillin than watchin a beautiful person fuck some monster up. Only issue with that was she got swarmed worse than I did and she is waaaay smaller than I am. Seriously thought she was gonna die. If she hadn’t hauled her ass outta there I woulda done it for her.

Thankfully Deth got off of his ass and killed one of the things trappin her so she could get out. That guy’s got a good aim on him. Not to mention he’s great at the pep talks. I split that big fucker in two after that. Killed him dead. Left me plenty of room to start fuckin up the rest of em. Cept I almost got bombed. Thanks Taz. S’okay. It missed. Killed more of those fuckers. All in all I like these people. They get shit done. Enough so that the last monster in the room jumped out the fuckin window. Shame though. Wanted to kill it.

Kill tally: 2 and one big fucker. Turned one of em to guts n blood and gave Anna a nice taste. Whoops. Took one of the big fucker’s teeth. Total: 6

Took Nu back to the room after that. She was pretty passed out. But damn was she light. Still stickin by the no way she’s human line. Dunno though. Woulda sucked to lose her so quick in the journey. Glad she got out of that mess alive. And Cedric yet again shows he ain’t so bad. Healed us all a little bit. He seems pretty new to this kinda thing. Hopefully he gets better. I get the feelin we’ll be gettin hurt a lot more. Also, finally fuckin made some goddamn money. 260 gold. More than the 14 I had. It’s nice to have some money in my wallet again. Slept. Ate. Got off the train. Decided to all stick together. It’s probably a good idea for this whole mountain adventure killin shit thing.

It better be 2000 each adventurer because splittin that between 6 people would suck.

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Enter: Gareth

You now what I hate? Fliers. It would be waaay easier if some asshole would just take the time out of their day to set up a little booth or something and go ‘Hey. You want an adventure? I have one for you!’ But nooooo. I have to read. Thanks asshole flier guy. Whatever. Sounds like this might be good. 2000 gold sounds great and it seems like it’ll be dangerous. My kind of adventure.

Oh yeah, asshole flier guy? Work on your damn handwriting. No one can read that shit.

Correction: Larhut Nebbinson

I think I like asshole flier guy better.

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deth'Ruki: First Dream

Loud voices. Ears ringing.
Others join, pleasant faces.
(Please be quiet)

A sense of confined warmth.
Foul smells, ringing bells.
(How unprofessional )

A hunt and a doll.
Gun shots. Blood splatters.
(The best kind of dream)

Coins jangle, and the wind dies down.
Scent of pumpkin. Clearer air.
(Let me sleep)

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deth'Ruki: Falling Asleep

Early morning run.
Another tab left unpaid.

(Pricey bastards)

Hunger sets in, tavern up ahead.
Free laughter, merriment abound.

(Pathetic)

Bartender motions me over.
Free smile, free drink.

(Do I look that desperate?)

Words and papers exchanged.
A job. Two thousand gold.

(Worth my time after all)

Questions. Details.
Free train, no hassle.

(The right direction)

(I’m coming for you)
(Just you wait
)

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Taz's Field Notes: When It Comes to Train Rides, You Clearly Get What You Pay For

Day 1.

The train ride was a bit more interesting than expected. I seem to have obtained some companions, all of whom seem quite delightful.

Companion #1-
Cedric: Assigned to my compartment. Paladin, seems very well-bred and cultured, although somewhat odd-looking. Well-dressed. Contents of bags: Healer’s kit, sunrods, assorted sundries, nothing terribly out of the ordinary. Quite a friendly fellow. Potential weaknesses: Seems somewhat naive.

Train did not depart immediately. Inquiries revealed that it was because the superstitious prescient conductor did not wish to depart without his lucky silver bell. Cedric went to inquire, reported back promptly. One point to Cedric for efficiency.

Some time later. Train departed without finding the bell in question. Manufactured: One (1) extract of Keen Senses, promptly consumed. Effects most invigorating. Went on to explore train cars and meet several other individuals.

Companion #2-
Garreth: Met in conversation in the hallway. Quite an attractive man. One point for Garreth. Human, barbaric fighter of sorts. Did not appear to have any valuable possessions, although I did not get the chance to search his bags. Potential weaknesses: Doesn’t seem to be all that bright.

Companion #3-
Pneu: Also met in conversation in the hallway, was in the same compartment as Garreth. Lovely young lady. One point to Pneu. Very quiet. Does not appear to be human or other recognized race, further study needed. Potential weaknesses: Cannot take very many hits without injury.

Companion #4-
Anna:
Emerged during conversation with Pneu and Garreth. Human, clearly not used to adventuring. Very excitable and talkative. Cute kid. Quite determined. :) Judging by the look of her, does not own anything valuable. Potential weaknesses: Naive, stubborn.

Headed for dining car. Anna introduced us all to her “friend” Deth, who did not seem all that thrilled by her company.

Companion #5-
Deth:
Met in dining car. Irritable gentleman, human, VERY pretty. One point to Deth. Gunslinger by trade, will have to inquire about his gunpowder supplier. Most likely has valuables in possession, but did not get a chance to verify. Potential weaknesses: Pride.

Ate wonderful meal. Observation: Anna has no table manners, not raised in well-to-do family. Cedric has impeccable manners, clearly brought up wealthy, although his luggage does not particularly show it. Also met nice man and his daughter. Not carrying anything valuable, although the girl was very attached to her doll.

Train sped up, obviously not normal. Went to investigate, found conductor’s door rusted shut. Garreth and Cedric could not budge it. Even my bombs couldn’t break it. Heard from one of the train’s staff that the conductor was sure that the bell protected the train from something. Resolved to search. Before we could get started, heard screams from dining car. Backtracked. Found pugwampi terrorizing the car’s occupants and flinging shit everywhere. (Not a figure of speech.)

Deth and I left the others the job of containing them and set off to search for the bell. Anna accompanied us after capturing one of the creatures. One point to Deth for good sense. One point to Anna for good sense. Search uneventful until we reached the kitchen. Stumbled upon an evil imp who flung soup at me. It disappeared before I could kill it, only to reappear in the next room with two compatriots who were trying to destroy a bell. Aha! Deth distracted them with bullets while I retrieved the bell. One point to Deth for excellent shooting. They did not like it when I rang the bell at them. Clearly the conductor was onto something after all.

After meeting up with the others again, we continued on to the conductor’s car to try the door again. Cedric had obtained a doll, apparently from the little girl in the dining car. Examination proved it to be an ordinary doll, nothing valuable. This time, the door opened easily. More malicious imps in conductor’s car, attacking conductor. As feared, caused bad luck. Made my bombs miss twice, still managed to do some damage. One point to Garreth for quick reflexes.

Summary of fight:
Two points to Garreth for kicking ass.
One point to Pneu for kicking ass.
One point to Pneu for continuing to fight while badly injured.
Two points to Cedric for excellent healing.
One point to Deth for ringing that bell superbly.
One point to Anna for effort.

I stabilized the conductor and Cedric brought him back to consciousness. He returned to his task of driving the train, just in time to save us all from certain destruction. Deth and I negotiated terms for our services with him. One point to Deth for excellent negotiation skills.

We rested until arrival at the station. In the morning, prepared four (4) bombs and one (1) extract of cure light wounds, promptly consumed. Feel much better. Agreed to form party with the others. On the whole, potential usefulness outweighs having to split fees obtained.

In summary.
Status of companions-
Deth: Usefulness- 3 points. Entertainment value- 2 points.
Garreth: Usefulness- 3 points. Entertainment value- 1 point.
Pneu: Usefulness- 2 points. Entertainment value- 1 point.
Cedric: Usefulness- 3 points.
Anna: Usefulness- 1 point. Entertainment value- 2 points.

Money obtained- 260 gold for services rendered to the Lightning Rail.
Items obtained- None. :( Nothing worth taking on the bodies of the pugwampi and assorted imps.

Day 1: Success.
Day 2: Pending.

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Pneumonia: New friends

Today, I rode the train. It was amazing! It moved so fast it was like walking through a tornado. Eldest sister Sarrarra would have loved it. It wasn’t all good though. There were these things the one called Taz said were Gremlins. I was careless and got hurt pretty bad. I still have much more practice if I’m going to be as good as master Ewhoo, he would have been fast enough to take them all on by himself. I really should have been more careful, but my new friend Garreth was in trouble and I didn’t want to lose a new friend just after making it. There are so many kinds of people around I had no idea there were so many different kinds. The ones I’m with seem nice enough, but it is hard to understand them when I can not hear their wind. Most of them aren’t entirely honest accept for the noisy girl Anna and Cedric the nobleman. They seemed to get along well though. I’m glad.

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Cedric: The start of a journey

Arrived in Fairhaven today with little difficulty. The past few weeks have seen nothing but worthwhile, if small, exploits. I want to truly test my mettle, and a larger city seems the place to do so. I explored the town, and found a flier asking for help ridding an observatory of a “person”. The calligraphy was terrible but the task sounds like it will be exactly what I need to start my career adventuring. I’m excited to finally put my combat training to use in a real fight. I’m sure the family will be pleased when I write to them of my success at the end of the journey.

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Memoirs of a Vento Mortis: Sarrarra

Nuahwah left about a week ago. I took her to Aundair myself; left her in a tavern there. I’m still not certain if I made the right decision. She isn’t meant to be a killer. I should have sent her to live with father the moment I realized it, but I just just couldn’t bring myself to let her go. She meant so much to me, to us all, she was the greatest blessing we could have asked for. This work is thankless and cruel, but she gave us hope. These last couple years have been particularly rough for us all, with Phiarlan taking her brothers and sisters away. We lost too many of our kin that day and she knew it. She understood, but she would never say anything; she just kept smiling. I can’t help but wonder if they knew, those Elves, if they knew that Cyre would be gone and just let one of our temples be destroyed. It was far too convenient that all their most important assets happened to be elsewhere. I have no proof either way and I’ll probably never know. To them we are just tools, pawns in their twisted games. Now we are fewer, less of threat to them. With the loss of so many of the best of our order we are forced to use the less experienced. The young are malleable, and I am reluctant to put the future of my people in the hands of youth. Nuahwah is the one for which my concern is greatest. When it came time for her trials she was so eager, there’s no way I could have stopped her. She has the skill to be one of us, she has the will to be one of us, but her heart is still too warm. It may be her undoing.

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Taz: Whatever We're Getting Into, It's Bound to Be Out of Everyone Else's Depth

Dawn.

Still waiting for Col. Boring. I hope he has what he promised me, or there’s going to be trouble~ :) No, really. Trouble. I keep my word when I give it, and I expect other people to do the same. Unless something prevents me from doing so. Or a better offer comes along. Or something else seems more entertaining. Or I get bored. But most of the time I keep it. Better for business that way.

I wonder how long I’ll last like this before I have to disappear. Deconstruct Taesaria, leave someone else in her place. Impeccable. I’ve lost track of the vanishings by now.

Dawn. Sun rising, streaking the sky with red and gold. Bored. Still.

Wait. What is that? A flier…

An invitation. A new adventure! New people! And they want me; I’ve seen the flier. It says ‘Dear Taz, we have something fun for you to do.’

Unless it wasn’t the flier. It might have been a whisper in my ear. It might have been the shadows that told me, curling around me like cats. It might have been a dream. Who knows what the truth is?

Oh, well~ What does it matter, anyway~?

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Pneumonia: Voices on the wind.

My mother’s voice. My sisters’ love. My clan. The wind reaches everywhere, and so as long as I listen to the wind, I am not alone. I hear them, feel them, smell them. They are with me now. They give me courage. I will pass the trials. I will become, Vento Mortis.

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