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Author Topic: Kaliklies Library - The Silent Guard  (Read 1685 times)
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Kane
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Spell Energy / Taint +12/-3
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« on: June 29, 2010, 02:06:35 PM »

The Silent Guard

The next packet was fairly small and seemed more in line with the work Kiliklies had conducted for the Order in the past; an old ruin, likely elthedar, in the White Desert. The packet was titled the Silent Guard. On the top of the pile was a brief note from the old sage.

“Amongst the best preserved and ancient of the elthedar ruins is a series of statues, all armed warriors that lead to and ring a small depression in the White Desert. There is no sign of any other habitation or civilization in a hundred miles in any direction. There are no markers, no script, no identification of any kind that tell why the statues were placed. While the faces have long since eroded away, I think there is no doubt that they were elthedar. I have scoured our libraries for any information on the site and found only vague whispers as if the elthedar had purposefully destroyed any records, as if they were ashamed or scared of what the guard represents.”

From the explorations of Haleem, 971 Second Age

“I had heard from the fishermen of Landfall tales of a host of statues guarding the entrance to a small vale near the heart of the White Desert. No living man had seen the statues but they were all convinced that they truly existed.  The fishermen had some superstitious dread of the statues and while they had a vague idea of where I should search, no one would accompany me even with the offer of a significant amount of good coin.

Equipped with horses able to handle the extreme temperatures of the desert, plenty of water, and my small private guard, I set out to explore the mysteries of the most desolate area of Eredane. We travelled along the coast looking for our first landmark, the eyes of the desert. We found them eight days later, colored sandstone cliffs that looked surprisingly like two great eyes staring off toward the sea. Seeing them made the trip worthwhile, even if we didn’t find the strange statues. It was tough to imagine that nature could create such a perfect representation, it was truly stunning.

Turning inland, we followed the line of cliffs seeking a gap that would lead us to the vale. It didn’t take long to find; a perfect cleft in the cliffs, seemingly cut by a gigantic axe. We reached the cleft by the end of the day and I saw the first of the statues, tucked into the cliff wall.  Strangely, they were facing in toward the vale and not out; like they were trying to prevent someone leaving the vale, not attempting to gain entry.

With some care, I climbed the cliff wall to get a closer look at one of the statues. It was obviously ancient, having withstood the elements for some time. The statue I inspected as well as the others I could see were all warriors, heavily armored and armed with swords or spears. The stonework at one time must have been exceptional as even now they felt lifelike as if they were alive just yesterday.  I couldn’t make out the features but from the height and build I believe they were fey. This close to the Kaladruns, I expected they might be dwarves, but they were much too tall, more like the graceful elven ambassadors to court.

With the dawn we rode into the vale and the sight I saw will stay with me until I die.  There were hundreds of statues, all facing toward the center of the vale.  They stood in proud ranks and held positions that I would have chosen if I had to defend against an assault trying to escape the valley. Great effort had gone into creating these statues so far from water and any sign of civilization. The vale was unsettling and our mounts were nervous. I quickly sketched what I saw while the light was still good.  I didn’t want to be here when the sun went down.”

Kaliklies notes: Sketches are missing. Haleem was likely a channeler who could feel the potency of the site. How did the statues get there?  Are they statues? What are they guarding?

Mining Survey of Clan Dosham, 412 Third Age

“We’re on a fool’s errand, following old travellers’ tales of a dry streambed of gold there for the taking. Ten days we’ve been travelling east seeking this mythical gold or signs of more useful iron or copper. On the eleventh day we found the vale.  Strangest thing I’d ever seen with hundreds of statues lining the walls, all girded for battle. I’m no artisan, but this was good, old work, made by a skilled craftsman.  With that many statues, it would take a clan of skilled stone workers the better part of a year to carve.

As I got closer, something wasn’t right about the statues.  The stone was not from anywhere this side of the mountains.  Dense, like granite, but much lighter in shade. They were heavy too, almost as if they were anchored into the ground. Three of us couldn’t budge one. When I touched it, the stone felt warm; not like it had been warmed by the sun, but like the heat came from inside the rock. Damn strange and no profit to the clan.  A thing for the old men and scholars to study.

Boram noted that they all seemed to face toward the center of the vale. I couldn’t see anything there, just bare ground.  There were no ruins of any type.  I’m not afraid of anything I can face with a hammer in my hand, but there was something about that place, that made me want to leave, and quickly. Before I left, I bent down and touched the stone of the valley’s floor; it was bad, crumbling in my hand.  This was not the clean rock of the Kaladruns, this was wrong, as if the rock could be diseased.”

Kaliklies notes: Copy of a text from Calador, fortunately retrieved before the fall of Erenland. The warmth of the statues and the problem with the rock reinforces my belief that the eldethar were warding something, something they’ve kept secure ages after their own race was gone.

Letter to the court of Caradul from Clan Dosham, 817 Third Age

“In response to your most urgent request we sent an armed party to the vale you requested. The team included our lore giver and our best stone smith. They examined the statues and compared them to the report from our clan hundreds of years in the past. The initial survey was correct; the statues are made of a stone not native to the region and nowhere south of the Icewalls. The stone smith was amazed, even after centuries of erosion at the quality of the work. The stone was so hard that it would take him several arcs to come close to making even a single statue.

There was one major difference from the old survey report; about a dozen of the statues, those closest to the bottom of vale, have crumbled into dust. There’s no sign of violence as if they purposefully smashed or struck by falling rocks.  The stone appeared to have wasted away, like a body decomposing. The lore giver also noticed that the statues further away from the valley floor were warmer to the touch then those close to the bottom. This was not natural stonework; there was magic here beyond anything we’ve ever seen.”

Kaliklies notes: Someone, not of our order at court was also interested in this site and felt the need to keep it from us. I suspect an avatar of the Queen. She must suspect, like I do, that some ancient evil is buried there and has been contained for ages. She must want access to that magic, to use in our war against the Shadow. But to gain it, would we be letting something equally dangerous free, something our ancestors so clearly feared.

 I could feel the dread from the various reports and that final note from Kaliklies.  Maybe he was right; maybe there is something in these piles that could be of use.  That someone else at court was interested leads me to believe that Kaliklies, and now I, am not on some foolish quest. I couldn’t see a relationship between the Pool of Ayrth’s Blood and the Silent Guard, but Kaliklies did. I wish he were still here, I could use his guidance.
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