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Nimloth

Member Since 02 May 2017
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Amber&emerald: Chapter 53

01 February 2020 - 03:57 PM

Author note: in my storyline, Keldorn divorced from his wife after he caught her red-handed cheating on him with sir William of Thorpe (who was not at all a ‘spent candle’) three years before the events of SOA, so when Meg and her party met him during the Unseeing Eye quest, his marriage to Maria was already over. I head-canon Keldorn as being in his early forties. Sunny Harbenger is an original character of my creation.

*************

CHAPTER 53

 

First things first
I'ma say all the words inside my head
I'm fired up and tired of the way that things have been
…(Imagine Dragons, “Believer”)

 

After contacting the organizations in the city they had worked for, the party members met at the Coronet for lunch, all of them save Jaheira, who was still out. "Ah, there she is!", Meg smiled at her as the druidess finally approached their table, "What news from your associates? Will they help?". Jaheira sat down, her expression was cautious, "I have news, but first I’d like to know whether your day has been profitable".

 

"Fair enough. Okay, Linvail said he’s going to send his best assassins, or at least the best among those who’re still alive, to join us in the Graveyard District. The Church of Helm will send five Watchers and we will also have the help of a small contingent of Order members, with none other than sir Keldorn leading them". The Half-Elf allowed herself a small smile, "Thank Silvanus".

 

"Your turn: what did the Harpers say?". "They may help, but they want to meet you first, to...". "To make sure I won’t eat their men for breakfast, I suppose. All right, when?". "Now, if you don’t mind". Meg’s eyebrows shot up, but she rose from her seat all the same, "Now? Well, the sooner, the better. I’m ready".

*******************

 

As they entered the building, the Ilmatari looked around, surprised to see it nearly empty, "Where is everyone? I expected them to have a small army waiting for the Big Bad Scary Bhaalspawn. I feel nearly insulted", she joked and Jaheira cuffed her on the head as usual. "Be quiet, child, now is not the moment for this nonsense". "Sorry".

 

In the main room, they found five Harpers waiting for them: two were clearly mages, one of whom held an unrolled scroll; another held a crossbow in his hands and the fourth wielded a shortsword. The last one, standing in the middle of the group, was a tall man wearing fine silk clothes, who had sharp but pleasant features, dark eyes and black hair.

 

As he saw the two women, he stepped forward, "Ah, Jaheira, it is good to see you again, my dear". The druidess narrowed her eyes and her body tensed as she saw him, "Spare me your falsehoods, Galvarey. We are not here to waste our time with you, we were summoned by the Herald...". "Exactly. I summoned you here".

 

She blinked, taken aback, "What? You’re not a Herald! What is the meaning of this?". "All in due time, my dear. Now, I see you have brought the Spawn, as requested". The Painbearer bowed slightly, "A pleasure to meet you, Galvarey, I am Margaret Dawn". "Uhm. Your manners seem good enough, for one of your kind.

 

As do your looks...", he massaged his chin, his eyes roaming over her form for a moment, then he shook himself and squared his shoulders, glaring at her, "Enough pleasantries. I need to ask you some questions and I am confident that you will answer". "No problem, ask away". "What is your first memory? Is it a happy one?".

 

The young priestess smiled, her gaze lost in a faraway moment, "Oh, yes, it is: the first thing I remember is snuggling in my brother’s arms to sleep as a child". "Your brother?". "Well, yes, Sarr...Sarevok".

 

He nodded, his lips twisting into a cold smile, "Sarevok Anchev, you mean. A renowned criminal and murderer and a Spawn as well. A monster". "Take that back!", she snarled, eyes flashing golden as her left hand slipped to the hilt of her mace, "He’s not a monster, he’s a wonderful man, better than you could ever hope to be and I won’t let you badmouth him!".

 

Galvarey’s smile turned smug, "Such anger...Not that it surprises me, considering your heritage. I am sure you would like to maul me, wouldn’t you, Bhaalspawn?". Jaheira grabbed Meg’s hand and whispered, "Calm down, Meg: if he perceives you as a threat, things will only get worse".

 

Her ward gritted her teeth, but reluctantly nodded, "Fine, but another word against Sarry and I’ll hand him his arse on a silver platter, is that clear?", she whispered back, then she raised her voice addressing the wannabe-herald, "I apologize for my outburst. Do you have other questions?".

 

"In fact, I do", he said, "Tell me, as a Bhaalspawn, do you have violent thoughts?". "Well...Sometimes, yes", she admitted, "Though I resort to violence only when I must". His smugness increased at that, "So you must use violence. Just as I expected of one with your tainted blood".

 

"You are twisting her words!", Jaheira snapped, irritated, "That’s not what she meant!". He shot her a condescending look, "How can you be sure of it? Can you understand the thoughts of a Beholder, or of an Illithid? She is just like them, my dear: a dangerous, bloodthirsty monster".

 

"She is not a monster and this is nothing but a farce!". "The interview will proceed nonetheless", he shot a quick look at the mage holding the scroll and after receiving a subtle nod, addressed the priestess once again, "Tell me, Spawn, what is your favourite colour?". Meg blinked, "Excuse me? What does my favourite colour have to do with you helping us against Bodhi?", she asked, baffled.

 

"Answer me and I will answer you". "Okay...My favourite colour is amber". "Amber! It, uh...", Galvarey mulled over it for a long moment, unsure, then shrieked, "It’s yellow! The colour of ichor, or of an infected wound oozing pus!". "Suuure...", the Ilmatari tugged on Jaheira’s sleeve, lowering her voice, "How in the Nine Hells come this raving lunatic has not been locked up in Spellhold yet?".

 

Before the druidess could answer, the man regained his composure, "It is as I thought: this creature is dangerous and corrupted, everything she says proves it. It is my duty to confine her where her evil won’t be a threat to the world anymore". The Half-Elf paled with anger, "Don’t even think of it, Galvarey!

 

She is not a threat to the world and I see your game now: you plan to use the imprisonment of a Bhaalspawn as a ladder to reach the position of Herald! I won’t...". "Think carefully on your next words, my dear Jaheira: you are a Harper, just like us. I trust you won’t turn on your own people, will you now? It could turn out badly for you", Galvarey said smoothly and she hesitated. "I...".

 

Margaret Dawn intervened, her tone was icy, "Look, Galvarey, frankly I don’t give a damn about you, your petty ambitions and your deranged plans: I came here because I hoped the Harpers could help us in taking Bodhi down, but since it’s clear that you are as useful as a possum’s fart, we are taking our leave. Come, Jae, we’re finished here ", she concluded, taking the druidess’ hand and walking towards the door with her.

 

"Not so fast, Bha...", Galvarey tried to say, but she quickly took a bottle out of her pack and tossed it at his feet. "A little gift for you", she explained, just before the glass shattered and a green fog started spreading inside the room, then she ran outside as fast as she could, stopping only when she found herself back in the square.

 

Jaheira followed her, but her lovely features were twisted with worry, "What was in that bottle, Meg?". Meg grinned mischievously, "Oh, don’t worry, I didn’t kill them...Though they’ll probably wish they were dead. That was a little something Immy learnt how to make from one of the inmates in Spellhold: a smoke that smells ten times worse than a skunk’s spray. It’s completely harmless, but I’m positive that from now on, they will think twice before messing with a Bhaalspawn again".

 

The Half-Elf gave her a stunned look, then burst out laughing, "You are incredible". "Heh, thanks. Thing is, I don’t want you to be in trouble with the Harpers and killing Galvarey and his cronies would have made it difficult for you to still be part of their organization. Besides, it would have proven them that I am a monster and we would have had the whole Harper contingent on us for their deaths", she sighed, "I’ve got enough people out for my blood as it is. I sure as Hell don’t need more of them".

 

"Don’t think about it now. Come, let’s go back to the inn: I still have to have lunch and my stomach is starting to protest", the druidess smiled and took her ward by the hand, walking away from the Harper hold.

*******************

 

After lunch, the party, along with Drizzt’s group, began rallying their allies, going first to the Docks to meet with the small group of Shadows Thieves promised by Linvail: waiting for them, there were twenty men and women dressed in leathers, led by Renal Bloodscalp himself.

 

The small army then moved to the Temple District, where five Watchers joined them and finally, they went to the Order Headquarters to gather the paladins. Before Meg could even approach the doors, Keldorn came out of the building, a wide smile on his face.

 

"Well met, my friends, I’m glad to see you again", the Tormtar greeted the party members, his eyes then fixing on Imoen, "And this lovely young lady must be Imoen, your missing friend". The pink-haired thief nodded and extended her hand, "Yep, that’s me, Imoen the Great! Nice to meet ya".

 

"Pleased to meet you as well. I am Keldorn Firecam", he said, giving her a brief hand-kissing. "Well now, I leave you alone for five seconds and you already find a replacement for me, uh?", an amused female voice came from behind him and the paladin turned with a soft chuckle. "I could never replace you, beloved, you know that".

 

"Yes, I know, but I wanted to hear you say that", the stranger replied, winking: she was a stunning woman in her early thirties, with a long braid of midnight-black hair, slightly slanted eyes the same shade of green as jade, golden-tanned skin and full lips and the rose red armour she wore marked her as a Tormtar paladin who had achieved the rank of Faithblade, "Are these the people you told me about, honey? The ones who helped you against the Beholder?".

 

"Yes, it is them", Keldorn put a hand on her shoulder and his eyes shone with both love and pride as he regarded her, "My friends, allow me to introduce my soon to be wife: lady Sunny Harbenger". She bowed with a radiant smile, "Pleased to meet you at last. My darling has told me a lot about you and I am grateful for the help you gave him in that dangerous mission. I hope that the help I can give you in the upcoming fight will be enough to repay you for it". Meg returned her smile, feeling like a burden had been lifted from her heart, "Thank you, lady Sunny".

 

While they were speaking, fifteen more paladins exited the Order headquarters and among them was another familiar face: lady Castalia walked up to the party members with a grin, the legendary sword Carsomry safely stored in the scabbard on her back and a blue-haired man by her side. "Hello there, people!", she greeted them, waving a hand in a very un-paladinish way, "Seems like we always meet when there’s some monster to slay, uh?".

 

"I fear this enemy will be harder to slay than Firkraag", the Painbearer replied, "Bodhi is a powerful Vampire and she has many undead minions at her disposal to throw at us". The stranger with blue hair, probably a Tiefling by his looks, beamed enthusiastically at that, "A lair full of undead? That’s magnificent! It will surely be an epic fight, one I will be more than happy to write down for posterity!

 

And of course, you will be the main character of the story, my enchanting nightingale", he added in a purr, stroking Castalia’s cheek and letting his hand slide slowly down her neck in a sensual caress. "Cool down, sparrow, now is not the time for this", she chided him gently, moving his hand away from her body, "I promise that I’ll be all yours as soon as we are back in my quarters, all right?".

 

He let out an exaggeratedly dramatic sigh, "As you wish, cruel and beautiful nightingale. But this bard will make sure that you hold to your word". "Oh, I will hold so much more than just that", she whispered in his ear as her left hand, unnoticed, slipped downwards and suddenly gave his backside a firm slap.

 

The Tiefling started and his eyes widened in mock-outrage, "My lady! How can you subject your poor sparrow to such a cruel treatment?". Her lips curved in a mischievous grin, "Well, you can always pay me back later, my sexy sparrow". "Rest assured that I will, my wonderful muse".

 

Keldorn cleared his throat loudly, his cheeks were a bit flushed, "If everyone is ready, we shall make our way to the Graveyard District while the Sun is still shining. Onwards!". The female Tyrran rolled her eyes, but she took her place in formation, Haer’Dalis at her side and along with her brothers and sisters of the Order, she began marching towards their destination.


A little announcement for the Spartacus tv series fans

17 January 2020 - 03:22 PM

Heya, it's me, Nimloth!

I don't know if there are any fans of the Spartacus tv series here (I mean the series with "Gods of the Arena", "Blood and Sand", "Vengeance" and "War of the damned", just to avoid misunderstandings), but if any of you is interested, I'm currently writing a Spartacus fanfic set in "Gods of the Arena".

Since it has the same, shall we say, less than refined language that's used in the original series, I obviously can't post it here, so I'm posting it at Archiveofourown. The title is "The white serpent" and my nickname there is Goddess_of_the_arena.

I hope to see you there! Bye and have a nice day, everyone! :-)

 

Post scriptum: I know I should have posted this announcement in the Water Cooler, or in the Smithy, but since the site is being overflooded with garbage by those mo§°h&%£$king spammers even to this moment, this was the only safe part of the board left.


Amber&emerald: Chapter 52

05 November 2019 - 12:44 PM

Author note: in this chapter, I added an enchanted item from D&D 5th edition, which is not available in the game. *smiles and shrugs apologetically* What can I say? Edwin wanted a special gift.

On a side note, dear Ilmater, this site has been over-flooded with spam recently! When I saw the ‘total members’ number go up, at first I thought they were real people joining in, but it seems we got nothing more than a bunch of Godsdamned spammers. *sighs* Ah, well. As Gru said, life is full of disappointments.

**************

CHAPTER 52

 

When they reached the Coronet, the adventurers found Drizzt and his party waiting for them at a table in the corner closest to the door. As he saw them, the Drow ranger stood and smiled, "Ah, here you are! But...", he frowned and look them up and down, "You look awful. What happened?".

 

Edwin snorted, "The usual: we found ourselves in a fight against enemies we had no obligation whatsoever to wipe out of existence, all because our illustrious leader felt it was the right thing to do, that’s what happened (One of these days, this girl will be the death of me, I’m sure)", he grumbled, "And besides, I’m still waiting for my gift!", he added, turning towards the Painbearer.

 

"You’ll have it, I swear, but don’t you want to eat and rest first?", she replied with a heavy sigh, "Please". "Umpf. I admit that food and rest will be welcome". "Don’t worry, you know I keep my word. Just be patient, okay?". "All right, I will wait...For a while. Now let’s order our dinner".

 

They sat at the table closer to Drizzt’s party and while eating, Meg explained in detail to their new allies everything they needed to know about Bodhi and her minions and drew a map of her lair. The Drow ranger frowned, worried, "This Vampiress sounds like quite a dangerous foe. We have made good use of our time, though: we have more than twenty holy stakes and a flask of Holy Water we bought from the Temple on the roof of this inn".

 

"That’s good news", she said, relieved, "And we probably won’t be on our own in this fight: we’re going to contact the Order of the Radiant Heart, the Church of Helm, the Harpers and the Shadow Thieves for help. If even one of these organizations accepts to give us backup, it will make the battle easier".

 

His eyebrows rose with incredulity, "The Order of the Radiant Heart and the Shadow Thieves? Your alliances are quite...Wide and variegated, abbil", he noted. She shook her head with an amused smile, "Heh, I wouldn’t call them alliances, to be honest: we did some dirty work for both and now I hope they feel like they owe us, that’s all".

 

"Now that’s more like it", he nodded, chuckling, "You haven’t changed much from the child I met at Candlekeep more than ten years ago". "I...Thank you, Drizzt", she said quietly, He’s wrong: I have changed, I feel it. Hopefully Ilmater will allow me to die before turning into a monster. The two parties talked for a while longer, getting to know each other a bit, then Meg and her friends retired to their rooms for a long and fitful sleep.

********************

 

After a much needed rest, Meg and Edwin went to the Promenade, while their companions split to contact their potential allies. "Ah, welcome back, dear customers!", Ribald smiled widely as he recognized them, "What can I sell you today?". "I’m looking for something magical and special for my friend here", she said, placing a hand on the Thayan’s arm with a warm smile, "He deserves a very nice reward for putting up with me despite everything".

 

The merchant massaged his chin thoughtfully, "Something special, you say? Well...", he shot a cautious look around and lowered his voice before continuing, "I have received a stock of, shall we say, ‘exotic’ wares last week. For fifty gold pieces, I can let you take a look at them...Off the record, of course. You understand, if the Cowled Ones happened to hear of it, I would be in trouble".

 

"I understand", she nodded and handed him the gold, "Show us what you have". Ribald pocketed the money and led them to a small room in the backshop, where he took some assorted artefacts which hummed softly with magic and lined them up on a long table, "Here are my beauties".

 

Edwin approached the table, his expression revealing nothing as he examined the various wands, amulets and rings, then his eyes suddenly lit up, "How much does this ring cost?", he asked, pointing to a platinum ring with delicate carvings on its surface and the Ilmatari saw his right hand twitch slightly, as if he was struggling to suppress the urge to grab it and put it on.

 

"This is the legendary Ring of Spell Turning, my lord", Ribald answered, smiling as he noticed his interest, "It costs two hundred fifty thousand gold pieces". Margaret Dawn arched an eyebrow, "Excuse me? Come now, Ribald, it’s not nice of you to try and rip us off so shamefully. I may not be a merchant, but I know a bad deal when I see one: the ring’s probably worth less than half of that".

 

The merchant’s lips curved in a cheeky grin, "Aye, you’ve got me there, lass. To be honest, I had originally intended to sell it for ninety-nine thousand golds, but seeing as your friend here was drooling all over it, I thought I’d give it a try". "I wasn’t drooling!", Edwin protested, his face scarlet with outrage, "I was merely admiring a fine piece of magical artwork, that’s all! (Insolent simian!)".

 

The Painbearer couldn’t help chuckling, "Anyway, Edwin, do you want it? Is this the gift you choose?". "I want this, yes". "The Ring of Spell Turning it is, then", she took her personal coin purse out and paid for the ring, while the Thayan slipped it on his left middle finger with a radiant smile.

 

"Are you satisfied with it?", she asked him, feeling a rush of warmth at seeing the way his eyes shone with happiness. "I am pleased with this gift, yes", he nodded and even after leaving the shop, he kept on stealing glances at his brand new ring, humming to himself and there was a spring in his step that she had never seen before.

 

"While we’re at it, I think we should go to the Temple of Ilmater nearby and buy some stakes and some flasks of Holy Water: they will come in handy against the Vampires", she said and Edwin nodded distractedly. "Yes, yes, whatever you say (Oooh, I can’t wait to show this ring to Mother, Sekhmet and my teacher! They will just love it!)".

*******************

 

At the Order Headquarters, Anomen was introduced in Prelate Wessalen’s study along with Minsc, Boo and Aerie and he was relieved to see the Prelate smiling as they entered the office. "Welcome, my lady and lords. Please, sit", Wessalen gestured to the comfortable armchairs in front of his desk, "To what do I owe the pleasure of your visit?".

 

The young Helmite smiled back, "Thank you for your warm welcome, Prelate. We have come to ask for the Order’s assistance: a powerful Vampiress has made her lair in the Graveyard District and we seek to destroy her and her minions for good". "This undead you mentioned, is she the Bodhi I have heard rumors about? I thought she was dead".

 

"We tried to kill the bad Vampiress, but she escaped the righteous buttkicking she deserved in the madhouse, because she was afraid of our might!", Minsc exclaimed before his companions could speak and Anomen coughed sheepishly. "What my friend here means to say, is that we faced her in Spellhold, but she fled the fight and came back to her lair in the city to gather her forces once more", he clarified.

 

Wessalen suppressed a grin and nodded, "I understand and the Order will gladly give you all the support we can offer: I will gather a contingent of paladins and knights, led by sir Keldorn Firecam. Just let us know when and where you will attack that unholy creature and they will be there", he assured them.

 

Anomen let out a sigh of relief, silently sending a prayer of thanks to his God, "Thank you, Prelate. We will come to the Headquarters before going to face Bodhi", he stood and shook hands with the older man. Aerie bowed with a happy smile, "Thank you so much, sir, for your help!". "My pleasure, milady", the Prelate said, returning her bow.

 

Minsc, who had no need for formalities, clapped him on the back, nearly toppling him over, "You are a Force of Goodness indeed! Minsc and Boo thank you for sending the good knights to help us kick the evil Vampiress’ butt", he declared, then turned to his friends, "Come, let’s go tell little Meg the good news!".

*******************

 

Yoshimo, along with Solaufein and Imoen, entered the Shadows Thieves building with a bit of nervousness: even if the party had been on good terms with the guild before Spellhold, the Kozakuran was still worried that Renal Bloodscalp may have changed his mind about cancelling his debt.

 

As they moved towards the hidden door, a thief approached them. "Hey there, ye are friends of th’ young lass, Margaret Dawn, right?". The bounty hunter nodded, "We are and...". "Good, Linvail wanna see ye, so just take th’ stairs an’ go meet him". "We will at once, thank you", he sketched a small bow and led his friends upstairs, all the way to Aran’s study.

 

The Shadowmaster was pacing back and forth, but he relaxed as they were allowed into the room, "Ah, good, you’re here. But I don’t see your lovely leader: where is Margaret Dawn?". "She is busy at the moment, a matter of life and death", the Kozakuran said, "Still, she sends her regards and hopes you will forgive her absence, Shadowmaster".

 

"Uhm. Well, I understand. This lovely young lady must be the missing Imoen...And who is your cloaked friend here? I don’t recall meeting him before either", Linvail’s turquoise eyes narrowed with suspicion as he turned to Solaufein and the Drow took a step forward and bowed. "Greetings, my lord. My name is Solaufein and I have recently joined Meg’s group. I assure you that I have no ill intentions towards you, or your guild".

 

"Why are you hiding your face then?". "For my safety only, master Linvail: the people of the Surface hold little love for my race", the warrior answered, lowering his hood. Aran blinked, "A Drow? Quite unusual...And still, it does not surprise me: your party is the most strangely assorted group of people I’ve ever met. You only need a Gnome to complete the picture", he commented, amused, "Now, onto business: I called you here because I need your assistance.

 

Please, make yourself comfortable", he added, going to sit behind his desk. "We need your assistance as well, Shadowmaster and I think we have the same goal", the bounty hunter said, taking a seat, "We mean to destroy Bodhi". "So do I", Linvail smiled coldly, "That bitch has weakened my guild and slaughtered my men and I want her to pay for it. I suppose you wanted to ask for some backup in your fight?". "Yes".

 

"Among those who have survived the guild war, there are some of my best assassins. I will have them meet you outside the guildbase when you are ready to go. And this time, please make sure she doesn’t escape", he added, his eyes glittering dangerously, "I am getting tired of her keeping on respawning in my city".

 

"Worry not, she will die", Yoshimo assured him, a slight shudder passing through him as he recalled the Slayer and considered that Meg could decide to use its power against the Vampiress once more. He could only pray to Ilmater and to the Gods and Goddesses of his native land that it would not come to that.

*******************

Ring of Spell Turning: while wearing this enchanted ring, the wearer has advantage on Saving Throws against any spell that targets only them (not in an area of effect). In addition, if the wearer rolls a 20 for the save and the spell is 7th level or lower, the spell has no effect on them and instead targets the caster, using the slot level, spell save DC, Attack bonus, and Spellcasting ability of the caster him/herself. It is numbered among the “Legendary Items”. Original price: 98280 gold pieces.


Furry chronicles (one-shot)

26 September 2019 - 02:34 PM

Author note: this is a story of bravery, strength and valour taken from the secret chronicles of the Great Wood of Naskel. I have been allowed by the descendants of Chestnut Bushytail the First to report it here for you, so that the world will know about the greatest battle in squirrel history.

Oxoxoxoxoxo

 

The party was resting peacefully, gathered around the campfire in a small clearing just outside the borders of Naskel: they had travelled until sunset without pause and now they were exhausted, so Jaheira had decided they would take a break and face the trouble in the mines the next day, fresh both in body and mind.

 

A sudden noise bolted Boo awake and he sniffed the air, his fur standing on end with fear as he recognized the smell drifting from the wood: wolves, four of them and rapidly approaching. He shot a glance at the pink-haired human female, Imoen, who was on guard duty, but she had dozed off and was snoring softly, her head resting on her chest.

 

He briefly considered biting her to wake her up, but he was reluctant to hurt a friend, even if it was for a good reason. The only party member he would have no qualms about biting was the Thayan wizard, but the prospect of the fiery retribution he would face made him discard that option as well.

 

What can I do?, the hamster thought anxiously, then a familiar chattering in the branches above his head gave him an idea and he scurried up the nearest tree, where he found a pair of squirrels, a male and a female, “Brother, sister, I need your help!”, he told them, his voice laced with urgency. The male squirrel tilted his head to the side, “What do you need, short-tailed brother?”.There’s a small pack of wolves approaching, if we don’t chase them away, they will hurt my friends!”.

 

More squirrels gathered on the nearby branches out of curiosity, but at the word ‘wolves’, they shivered with fear and started talking all at once. “We can’t fight wolves! Wolves are bad!”, one cried. “They are big!”, another added. “And they are dangerous!”, a third voice concluded.

 

We can be dangerous too!”, Boo exclaimed, raising his own voice to be heard over the commotion, “I have been on many a battlefield in these last months and believe me, our teeth and claws are nothing to scoff at! Besides, there’s only four of them and at least forty of us, we can do it! You are stronger than you know and if you follow me, you will see for yourself the true strength of rodents!”.

 

His speech struck a deep, hidden chord in the squirrels’ hearts: for too long they had allowed the flea-bags to rule their woods, for too long they had allowed the wolves to chase them away from their homes only because the bigger animals wanted their trees as their personal branched toilets. It was time to put an end to their oppression.

 

The leader of the squirrels nodded, “All right, brother, we are with you”, he said, then turned to his kin and shouted, “Let’s show those wolves who rules this woods!”. A chorus of enthusiastic voices answered him and Boo smiled. “Thank you, brothers and sisters”, he said, then he quickly gave them instructions for the attack.

 

Before the wolves could approach the borders of the clearing, the hamster and the squirrels swooped on their backs with terrifying warsqueaks, savagely biting and scratching every tender spot they could find with all their righteous furry fury. The startled canines let out yelps of surprise, which quickly turned into howls of pain that bolted the adventurers awake.

 

The party members watched with astonishment as the four wolves writhed desperately in the futile attempt to get rid of their bushy-tailed assailants, only to at last give up and dash back into the woods, whining in defeat. Boo and the squirrels dropped off of their prey and scurried to the clearing, filling the silent night with triumphant squeaks: they had won!

 

Minsc beamed with pride and happiness, having fully understood what had just transpired before his eyes, “Ah, Boo, you and your friends chased away the evil wolves! That was a most glorious buttkicking!”, he exclaimed, bending to gather his faithful animal companion in his big hands, “Hamsters and rangers everywhere, rejoice!”. Boo rubbed his head against the Rashemi’s palm, “I couldn’t leave you in danger, my friend”, he replied in his own language, “We’re a team”.

 

Margaret Dawn chuckled and approached them with a warm smile, “Thank you for saving our lives, my sweet furry hero”, she said and placed a kiss on Boo’s head, then she took some cheese and a loaf of bread from her pack and knelt before the squirrels, “And thank you too, of course. This is for you, a little reward for your help”.

 

The bushy-tailed heroes happily accepted the food and their leader addressed the hamster one last time, “You were right, short-tailed brother: we are stronger than we thought ourselves to be. This victory will not be forgotten and neither will your name. May the Great Nut watch over you, Boo Braveheart.

 

Boo nodded, “Thank you for your assistance, brothers and sisters. May the Great Nut always give you warm shelter and plenty of food. Farewell”. With a parting twitch of their noses, the squirrels scurried back to their homes, while the hamster took his rightful place in Minsc’s shirt pocket to sleep. The upcoming days would be full of action and he would need all of his strength to fight once more alongside his two-legged companions.

 

THE END


A Melicamp story (one-shot)

04 September 2019 - 03:27 PM

This is a little "what if" following Melicamp's journey from nobody to hero. I hope you'll like it! :-)

Author note: I know, I made Thalantyr worse than he is in the game, but even the nicest of wizards can have a bad day and the party had the misfortune of meeting him in such a day. Also, Melicamp’s miscast spell had made a mess of his study, so the old man was (understandably) less than inclined to help him out.

oxoxoxoxoxo

 

As the party set up camp for the night, the morale was quite low. After meeting Melicamp, a mage apprentice who had accidentally turned himself into a talking chicken, they had accepted to accompany him back to his master’s home, in the hopes that Thalantyr would polymorph the young man back to his original shape.

 

Unfortunately, the old mage first told them he would only speak to them if they brought him the skull of an Undead for his experiments and when they came back with the disgusting item, he simply kicked them out of his home, stating that he had no time to waste with foolish adventurers and an even more foolish, useless apprentice who had nearly destroyed his study with a spell gone awry.

 

No amount of pleading (from Meg and Melicamp mostly) and threats of being incinerated with a well-placed Fireball (from Edwin) did any good: on the contrary, Thalantyr, annoyed by their insistence, evoked a score of hungry and angry Ogres and a pack of Gnolls, forcing them to a hasty retreat, since they had no healing spells left and a battle would have been too costly at that moment.

 

Melicamp stared into the campfire clucking sadly, huddled against Meg’s side as she stroked his feathers comfortingly. “It will be all right, you’ll see”, she told him, “There’s plenty of mages in the Sword Coast and beyond, we only need to find the right one. In the meantime, you’ll stay with us, okay?”. Jaheira frowned, “Child, I don’t think this is wise”.

 

“We can’t just leave him on his own, Jae, he…”. “She”, Imoen corrected her and the Ilmatari blinked. “Uh?”. “Well, Melicamp is a chicken, so, technically speaking, he is currently a she”, the pink-haired thief explained. Poor Melicamp let out a pitiful cluck, looking, if possible, even more miserable than before, “I hate my life!”.

 

The Painbearer felt her heart clench at seeing him so desperate, then her face brightened, “Hold on!”, she exclaimed, rummaging into her Bag of Holding, then she took out of it a leather belt and placed it around his waist.

 

As soon as the clasp closed, an orange-yellowish glow surrounded Melicamp and when it faded, the chicken had changed: his size has increased, his tail was now made of long, russet crescent-shaped feathers, he had a glorious red crest on his head and two equally bright red wattles dangled from under his beak. “What..?”, he blinked, turning his head this way and that to admire his new form.

 

“You’re a rooster”, Meg smiled, “I can’t give you your human form back, but at least now you’re of the right gender again. I knew that the Girdle of Gender Change would come in handy sooner or later”. The rooster gave her a fond, grateful look, “Thank you, Meg”. “Hey, it’s the least I could do”. Edwin snorted, “Bah! At least, when he was a chicken, he could lay eggs for our breakfast! What good is he to us now?”.

 

She shrugged, “He can fight, I guess. I have an Enchanted Tome of Strength in my pack…I had planned of reading it myself, but I think this will be a better use of it”, she said, placing the open book in front of Melicamp, “Here you go”. The human-turned-rooster squawked excitedly, flapping his wings, “Great! Thank you!”, he exulted, then he sat down and eagerly immersed himself in the reading.

 

“And since you are, or were, the apprentice of a mage, I think Edwin could be your new te…”. “Absolutely not!”, the Thayan cut her off, “I won’t lower myself to teaching magic to a brainless chicken!”. “Rooster”. “It doesn’t matter! I won’t and that is all! (I would never live it down, should anyone from home know of it)”.

 

The young woman sighed, “Oh, that’s a shame: if anyone could teach him magic and turn him from a mere apprentice to a force to be reckoned with, that’s you, the best wizard of all the Realms. But if you don’t want to do it, I guess Dynaheir will have to tutor him in your place”, she said, winking conspiratorially to the Rashemi witch where he couldn’t see her. “Thou made the right choice, Meg”, Dynaheir said haughtily, “No good could ever come from an inferior Thayan’s teachings on magic”.

 

“Inferior?!? How dare you, you Rashemi simian!”, the Red Wizard snapped, outraged, “Fine, I’ll be the chicken’s…The rooster’s teacher. And when he becomes the mightiest bird wizard of the Realms, you’ll have to crawl before the both of us!”.

 

The Wychalaran sniffed disdainfully, “If thou sayeth so. Meg?”. Margaret Dawn shrugged apologetically, hiding a grin, “Sorry, Dynaheir, but he wins this round. Melicamp, from now on, you’re Edwin’s apprentice. Promise me you’ll be a good student”. Melicamp nodded, “I promise. Master Edwin, I am ready for my first lesson”.

 

oxoxoxoxoxo

 

During his travels with Meg’s party, thanks to the other two Enchanted Tomes she had managed to acquire for him along the way (one more book of Strength and one of Constitution) and Edwin’s teachings on magic, Melicamp became a valiant warrior and a powerful wizard in his own right, despite his feathery form.

 

When the group was ambushed by Bodhi’s minions and brought to Irenicus’ lair, the rooster was left behind, completely ignored by the Vampires who considered him useless, so he had no choice but to set out on his own.

 

He had been in Athkatla for barely a day, when, while sleeping, he was captured by a ruffian on Lethinan’s payroll and sold to the Copper Coronet to fight against other roosters: apparently, Amnian nobility enjoyed the sight of two feathered combatants fighting to the death.

 

Thanks to the experience he had gained on the Sword Coast and his human intelligence, Melicamp had little trouble winning fight after fight and by the time Meg and her friends took their weapons against Lethinan and the slavers, he had become one of the most renowned fighters of his category, with a separate cell, a harem of lovely girls to pet him and the best bird-feed available at his disposal.

 

The cage he was kept in during his resting moments was slammed open and the rooster suddenly found himself looking in surprise at one of his old travelling companions, the big Rashemi ranger Minsc, along with his inseparable hamster Boo, “Minsc? Is that you?”.

 

“A talking rooster? Wait, Minsc knows you: you’re friend Melicamp!”, the ranger beamed, “Oh, joyous day, we are reunited with our old friend!”, he exclaimed happily, taking Melicamp up and giving him a pat on the head, “Little Meg, come and see who we’ve found!”.

 

The Ilmatari joined them and smiled, “Melicamp! Ilmater be praised, I’m so glad to see you! How are you?”. The rooster clucked with joy, “I’m glad to see you too, Meg dear. I was captured by one of Lethinan’s men more or less a couple of months ago, but I didn’t fare that bad, all things considered: I’m a gladiator now”.

 

She blinked, puzzled, “A…Gladiator?”. He nodded, “Indeed! My fighting prowess is renowned and praised in all Athkatla and everyone knows me by my battle name”. “Ah. And what is it?”.

 

He straightened and his chest swelled with pride as he answered, “I’m Melicamp, the Raging Cock!”.

 

oxoxoxoxoxo

 

Melicamp once again joined Meg’s adventuring party and hit the road with both old and new travelling companions, their journeys bringing them all across Amn, Tethyr, the Underdark and even the Abyss. In Suldanesselar, he was finally restored to his original human form by the Seldarine, as a reward for stopping Irenicus once and for all.

 

His thirst for adventure was not yet sated, though and when the news of an upcoming war in Tethry reached the Elven city, he decided to fight at  his friends’ side against the new threat. He remained a steadfast companion through thick and thin and his blades and spells had a big part in the victory in the Bhaalspawn War, helping Meg and Imoen get the upper hand over their deranged, blood-thirsty, power-hungry half-siblings.

 

After the end of the war, being back to normal and having had enough of adventuring for a lifetime, he decided to settle down in Beregost, bought a nice house and married the lovely daughter of a farmer, who gave him a son, his pride and joy.

 

Even to this day, many, many years later, the bards still sing ballads about Melicamp the Brave, the young human warrior-mage who travelled with the legendary Bhaalspawn and helped bring peace in the Realms. And in the memories of many Amnian nobles, a certain feathery gladiator still rages on.

 

THE END


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