Difference between revisions of "Landsoftheblacksea:Main Page/players/fariya mithra camar"
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Revision as of 15:11, 7 November 2021
A Half-elf Fighter-Mage-Cleric from the distant land of Jhon
- 1 Basics
- 2 Physical
- 3 Attributes
- 4 Saving Throws
- 5 Weapon Proficiencies
- 6 Nonweapon Proficiencies
- 7 Languages
- 8 Encumbrance
- 9 Equipment
- 10 Large Locked Chest in Room
- 11 Total Wealth
- 12 Future Shopping List
- 13 Money
- 14 Mage Spells
- 15 Mage Spells (Spell Book)
- 16 (Spell Book)
- 17 Mage Spells Available to Learn
- 18 Priest Spell Slots / Day
- 19 (Priest Spells)
- 20 Turn Undead
- 21 Motivation
- 22 Leather Workshop/Apothecary (Future Plans)
- 23 Personality
- 24 Background
|Character Name||Player Name||Class||Alignment||AC||Experience||Needed for Next Level||Hit Points|
|Fariya Mithra Camar||Darklin||F2 / M2 / C2||LG||10 (6 w/ Armor spell)||F-2423/M-2515/C-2515||Next F-4000/M-5000/C-3000||12 (38 before split)|
Add Plus 10% for Magic-User and Cleric, Not Fighter
|Age||Height||Weight||Eye Colour||Hair Colour|
|Strength||10||Wt. Allowance: 40#; Max Press: 115#; Open Doors: 6; Bend Bars: 2%|
|Dexterity||8||0 React. Adj; 0 Missile Att. Adj.; 0 Def. Adj.|
|Constitution||13||Sys. Shock: 85%; Res. Surv: 90%|
|Intelligence||18||#Lang: 7; Max Spell Lvl: 9th; Chance to Learn Spell: 85%; Mx Spells/Level: 18|
|Wisdom||16||Mag. Def. Adj: +2; Bonus Spells: 2 x 1st, 2 x 2nd; Spell Failure: 0%|
|Charisma||15||Mx. Hench: 7; Loy. Base: +3; Reac. Adj.: +3|
|Paralyzation/Poison/Death Magic||Rod, Staff or Wand||Petrification or Plymorph||Breath Weapon||Spell|
- Half-elven characters have a 30% resistance to sleep and all charm-related spells.
- Half-elven infravision enables them to see up to 60 feet in darkness.
- Secret or concealed doors are difficult to hide from half-elves, just as they are from elves. Merely passing within 10 feet of a concealed door (one hidden by obstructing curtains, etc.) gives the half-elven character a one-in-six chance (roll a 1 on 1d6) of spotting it. If the character is actively seeking to discover hidden doors, he has a one-in-three chance (roll a 1 or 2 on 1d6) of spotting a secret door (one constructed to be undetectable) and a one-in-two chance (roll a 1, 2, or 3 on 1d6) of locating a concealed door.
First (4)+(Fighter) New proficiency every 3 levels. 3,6,9,12
3rd-Expertise in Scimitar, 6th-Spear, 9th-Quarterstaff, 12th-Great Scimitar
|Skill||Slots||Stat||Modifier||Score||Description of Skill|
|2nd Skill - Fisher-Swimming||(0)||STR||0||10||A character with swimming proficiency knows how to swim and can move according to the rules given in the Swimming section (Ch 14). Those without this proficiency cannot swim. They can hold their breath and float, but they cannot move themselves about in the water.|
|2nd Skill- Fisher-Fishing||(0)||WIS||-1||15||A character with this proficiency knows how to catch fish with hook and line, net, and spear. If fish are present in a body of water, a successful proficiency check means the character has caught something. Typically, with a successful check, the fisherman he will catch 1 d6 fish in an hour. This number can be doubled if many fish are present. It is reduced to one fish per hour if the character is seeking large quarry-such as sturgeon, muskellunge, giant carp, or saltwater fish.|
|2nd Skill- Fisher-Small Boat Handling||(0)||WIS||+1||17||This proficiency allows the character to pilot any small boat, such as a kayak or canoe, operating it at maximum speed. It also allows make minor repairs and improvements in these boats, such as waterproofing them and patching holes. A successful proficiency check enables the character to handle the craft in treacherous situations.|
|Healing||(2)||WIS||-2||14||A character proficient in healing knows how to use natural medicines and basic principles of first aid and doctoring. If the character tends another within one round of wounding (and makes a successful proficiency check), his ministrations restore 1d3 hit points (but no more hit points can be restored than were lost in the previous round). Only one healing attempt can be made on a character per day.|
|Leatherworking||(1)||INT||0||18||Characters with this skill can skin animals, tan leather, and work that leather into clothing, armor, backpacks and saddlebags, harnesses, etc. These tasks are automatic successes, but the leather worker will have to make a proficiency check when attempting unusual jobs-making a leather patch for a boat hull, for example, or making a usable tent of scraps of hide.|
|Spellcraft||(1)||INT||-2||16||Although this proficiency does not grant the character any spellcasting powers, it does give him familiarity with the different forms and rites of spellcasting. If he observes and overhears someone who is casting a spell, or if he examines the material components used, he can attempt to identify the spell being cast. A proficiency check must be rolled to make a correct identification. Note that since the spellcaster must be observed until the very instant of casting, the spell-craft proficiency does not grant an advantage against combat spells. The proficiency is quite useful, however, for identifying spells that would otherwise have no visible effect. Those talented in this proficiency also have a chance (equal to half of their normal proficiency check) of recognizing magical or magically endowed constructs for what they are.|
|Reading/Writing||(1)||INT||+1||19||Elven. Read and Write Elven Languages and runes.|
|Religion||(1)||WIS||0||16||Characters with religion proficiency know the common beliefs and cults of their homeland and the major faiths of neighboring regions. Ordinary information (type of religious symbol used, basic attitude of the faith, etc.) of any religion is automatically known by the character. Special information, such as how the clergy is organized or the significance of particular holy days, requires a proficiency check.|
|Research||(1)||INT||0||18||A wizard with this skill is well-versed in the theory and application of spell research. He is familiar resources, with the use of libraries, laboratories, and other resources, also has a good grasp of the fundamental processes of experimentation and problem-solving. With a successful proficiency check, the character gains a +5% bonus to his success roll when researching a new spell and only requires one-half the usual amount of time to perform spell research or determine the process necessary to manufacture a particular magical item.|
|Herbalism||(2)||INT||-2||16||Those with herbalist knowledge can identify plants and fungus and prepare nonmagical potions, poultices, powders, balms, salves, ointments, infusions, and plasters for medical and pseudo-medical purposes. They can also prepare natural plant poisons and purgatives.|
|Thaumaturgy||(1)||INT||-2||16||This is the art of the casting of magic, the study of the interaction of verbal, somatic, and material components in order to produce a desired effect. While all wizards have some degree of familiarity with this field of knowledge, a character who becomes proficient in thaumaturgy has spent time studying the forms and practices of magic. This depth of knowledge gives the wizard a +5% bonus on his learn spell rolls after a successful non-weapon proficiency check has been made.|
|Scribe||(1)||Dex||+1||9||A character with this proficiency is familiar with a scribe's techniques for preparing pages and working both swiftly and accurately. This is an invaluable skill for a wizard; with a successful proficiency check, the character gains a +5% bonus to any rolls he must make in order to copy or transcribe a spell into his spell book or onto a scroll.|
First level (4)+ Intell Bonus (7)+ (Priest/Wizard Classes get New proficiency every 3 levels.) 3,6,9,12
3rd-Hunting, 6th-Navigation, 9th-Riding, Land Based, 12th-Animal Handling
Note: Used All Language INT bonus slots for NWP's
|Equipment on Person||Weight||Location|
|Leather Armor||15 lbs||OFF Body|
|Coin Purse with gold and Emeralds||*||Between the Twins|
|Brown Hooded Cloak||1 lb||Body|
|Dwarven Steel / Silvered Scimitar||3 lbs||Wilderness Harness on Back Crossed|
|8 Throwing Daggers w/o handles||4 lbs||Right & Left Thigh Sheaths|
|4 Days Iron Rations||2 lb||Backpack|
|Thigh Sheaths x 2 (6 Dagger Capacity each)||1 lb||Lt & Rt Thighs|
|Healing Haversack||3 lbs||Over Shoulder|
|Large Belt pouches x2||1 lb||Waist on Belt|
|Ring of Thought (see notes below)||*||Left hand|
|Iron Phoenix Holy symbol||*||Neck under shirt|
|Veniri Gladius Short Sword* (50gp)||3 lbs||Horizontal-Small of back rt side|
|Dwarven Steel Short Sword||3 lbs||Horizontal Small of Back Lt Side|
|Long Bow||3 lbs||Lt Hand|
|Quiver with 50 Sheaf Arrows||2 lbs||Back|
|Bone Medallion from Acaozzashk||0 lbs||Beltpouch|
|8 copper coins; 8 silver coins; a brass ring; a (filthy) rabbits foot charm, leather bracelet with several bone charms||1lb||Beltpouch|
|Total with Sling Bag||57 lbs|
|Total Without Sling Bag||45 lbs|
|Equipment in Leather Sling Bag||Weight|
|4 Days Iron Rations||2 lb|
|3 Vials of Lamp oil||3 lbs|
|Hooded Lantern||2 lbs|
|Hand Axe through belt||5 lbs|
* Ring of Thought: Base Power: All Mentalism Spells 125% (Range, AoE, Duration, # creatures affected, etc. etc.). All saves against Mentalism spells cast by wearer at -1; Wearer saves against Mentalism spells and spell-like effects @ +1. Single person cannot wear more than one of the Rings at a time. Here are the spells in the Mentalism List: Charm Person-1st, Hypnotism-1st, Spook-1st, ESP-2nd, Forget-2nd, Clairaudience-3rd, Clairvoyance-3rd, IRON MIND-3rd, Suggestion-3rd, Charm Monster-4th, Phantasmal Killer-4th, Psychic Protection-4th, Rary's Mnemonic Enhancer-4th, Domination-5th, Feeblemind-5th, Magic Jar-5th, Sending-5th, Eyebite-6th, Geas-6th, Mass Suggestion-6th, Tower of Mental Resistance-6th, Descent into Madness-7th, Demand-8th, Mind Blank-8th, Programmed Amnesia-9th.
- Veniri Gladius Short Sword with silver inlaid guard featuring nautical designs and a squid pommel with the twined tentacles forming the grip. Blade is a high gloss buffed steel flawless in every way. (50 gp value)
- Healing Bag consists of a Large Haversack usually made of heavy leather. It is used primarily by characters who have the Healing Proficiency. A healing bag allows such characters a +1 bonus to his chance to successfully heal a victim. A healing bag may be purchased new complete with all supplies, or may be assembled by the healer. A complete bag includes 30 rolled bandages of various sizes, 20 feet of rolled gauze, a tiny metal mixing bowl, ceramic Mortar and Pestle, and ten jars of various herbs that can be crushed and mixed with water to form a paste to be applied to wounds. The kit also includes 3 curved gold needles and a spool of white and black thread (50 feet) to be used to stitch gaping wounds. Some kits include several ceramic vials (10) to be filled with clean water. Hero's Heart Herbs x 3. Cost 6 Gold Pieces.
- Fishing Gear=Spear for fishing, Cane Pole, Fishing line x2 Spools, 2 corks, weights & Wood Bait box (4 Lbs for all) (Stays on Barge will not carry.)
Large Locked Chest in Room
|Blue Palace Golden Chainmail with Red Surcoat (40lbs)|
|Pair of Matched Scimitars - Flames of A’Salam|
|Leather Cow Hide|
|Flasks of Oil x 5|
|Small Silver Mirror|
|2 Days Iron Rations|
|Leather Map case|
|Writing quills x 10|
|Large Saddle Bags|
|Vials of Ink x 2|
|Silk Rope 50 ft|
|Hooded Fine Fur Cloak from Violet (50 gp)|
One Month paid Room and Board compliments of Violet
Small Dwarven Steel Shield being made. Dwarven Steel Silvered Scimitar being made. Both Paid for up front.
|Local on Person Wealth in coin purse||67 gold, 9 Silver, 8 Copper in coin purse||Emeralds x 2 (100 GP Each)|
|Total Wealth Stored in Locked Chest in Residence||Fine Fur Cloak (50gp)||Blue Palace Golden Chainmail||Flames scimitars-matching pair|
Future Shopping List
|Silver Holy Symbol of the Phoenix*|
|Draft Horse and Wagon*|
- Long term
|Gold||67 on person|
|Gems & Jewlery||Emeralds x 2 (100 GP Value each)(Coin Purse)|
Coin purse is carried between the Breasts.
Mage Spells (Spell Book)
|1||Read Magic||0||2 rd / level||One Creature||V,S, M||1 rd||None||Read magical text and scrolls.||Clear Crystal or Prism|
|1||Armor||Touch||Special||1 creature||V, S, M||1 round||None||provides AC 6; lasts until dispelled or recipient takes 8 + 2/lvl hp damage||Fine Cured Leather piece Blessed by a Priest|
|1||Sleep||30 yds.||5 rds/ level||Special||V, S, M||1||None||Causes 2d4 HD of Creatures to fall asleep||Pinch of sand, live cricket or rose pedal|
|1||Comprehend Languages||Touch||5 rnds/lvl||Caster||V, S, M||1 round||None||Understand one creature or written text.||Pinch or Soot or Salt|
|1||Magic Missile||60 yds + 10 yds / level||Instantaneous||1-5 targets||V, S||1||None||fires force missile doing 1d4+1 damage each. +1 missile every 2 levels, 2 @ 3rd, 3 @ 5th||None|
|1||Unseen Servant||0||1 hr + 1 turn/lvl||30 ft radius||V, S, M||1||None||lift up to 20#, pull up to 40#, take up to 6 hp damage from AoE spells, dispelled if sent outside radius||Piece of String and Bit of wood.|
|1||Spider Climb||Touch||3 rds + 1/ level||Creature Touched||V.S, M||NEG.||1||Climb on Walls and Ceilings.||Live Spider and drop of Bitumen|
|1||Shield||0||5 rds / level||Special||V,S||1 RD||None||AC2 VS Hand missiles, AC3 VS Propelled, AC4 vs melee||None|
|1||Color Spray||0||Instantaneous||5x20x20 Wedge||V, S, M||1||Special||Color Flash 1d6 creatures Blind, Unconscious or Stunned.||Red, Yellow, Blue sand|
|1||Identify||0||1 Rd / Level||1 Item/level||V,S,M||Special||None||Identify Magical Items. 10% Chance per level.||Pearl (100gp) & Owl Feather steeped in wine & drunk|
|1||Fist of Stone||0||1 rd / level||Caster's Hand||V, S||1||None||Turns casters fist to stone and grants 18-00 strength||None|
|1||Spook||30 FT||Special||1 Creature||V,S||1||Negates||Scares creature and forces it to flee until saving.||None|
Spells wanted to Find & Learn: 1st: Mount-PHB, Copy-WHB, Burning Hands-PHB, Mending-PHB, Feather fall-PHB, Write-WSC. 2nd:Strength-PHB, Cat's Grace-S&M, Blur-PHB, Stinking Cloud-PHB, Continual Light-PHB, Deep-pockets-PHB, ESP-PHB, Invisibility-PHB, Knock-PHB, Melf's Acid Arrow-PHB, Filter-WHB, Web-PHB, Spectral Hand-PHB, Alter Self-PHB, Scare-PHB, Mirror Image-PHB, Glitterdust-PHB, Levitate-PHB. 3rd: Haste-PHB, Dispel Magic-PHB, Fireball-PHB, Fly-PHB, Lightning Bolt-PHB, Protection from Normal Missiles-PHB, Vamperic Touch-PHB, Water Breathing-PHB, Wraithform-PHB, Tongues-PHB, Monster Summoning 1-PHB, Melf's Minute Meteors-PHB, Flame Arrow-PHB, Augmentation 1-Tome, Lance of Disruption-S&M, Far Reaching 1-Tome, Gust of Wind-PHB, Invisibility 10'Radius-PHB.
|First Level (2)||Second Level (0)||Third Level (0)||Fourth Level (0)||Fifth Level (0)|
|Fist of Stone-Tome of Magic|
Mage Spells Available to Learn
Priest Spell Slots / Day
|First Level (4)||Second Level (0)||Third Level (0)|
|Cure Light Wounds||Charm Person or Mammal|
|Detect Evil||Detect Charm|
|Detect Magic||Dust Devil|
|Detect Snares & Pits||Fire Trap|
|Endure Cold / Heat||Flame Blade|
|Light or Darkness||Find Traps|
|Locate Animals or Plants||Messenger|
|Magical Stone||Heat Metal|
|Protection from Evil||Hold Person|
|Purify Food & Drink||Know Alignment|
|Remove Fear||Produce Flame|
|Shillelagh||Silence 15 ft Radius|
|Analyze Balance-Tome||Slow Poison|
|Call Upon Faith-Tome||Spiritual Hammer|
|Ring of Hands-Tome||Speak with Animals|
|Sacred Guardian-Tome||Wyvern Watch|
|Calm Animal- S&M||Draw Upon Holy Might-Tome|
|Firelight- S&M||Music of the Spheres-Tome|
|Orisons- S&M||Mystic Transfer-Tome|
|Strength of Stone- S&M||Sanctify-Tome|
|Wind Column- S&M||Astral Awareness-S&M|
|Log of Ever burning||Cure Moderate Wounds-S&M|
|Dispel Fatigue||Iron Vigil-S&M|
|Invisibility to Undead||Resist Acid & Corrosion-S&M|
|Soften Earth & Stone-S&M|
|Create Holy Symbol-Tome|
|Skeleton or 1 HD||7|
|Ghoul or 2 HD||13|
|Shadow or 3-4 HD||16|
|Wight or 5 HD||19|
|Wraith or 6 HD||-|
|Mummy or 7 HD||-|
|Spectre or 8 HD||-|
|Vampire or 9 HD||-|
|Ghost or 10 HD||-|
|Lich or 11+ HD||-|
Fariya is driven to fulfill her obligation to her master and there by become her own woman. Free from the confines of repayment of debt and favor. She appreciates the training she was given and is willing to repay her obligations to her master, but is willing to learn all she can and set herself up for a good life after her debt is payed.
* Motivated to purchase her own store and make her own way. * Learn everything and anything she can to better her life and improve her way of living. * Continue to bring the ways of the Jhon to others and prove that A'Salam is the only faith.
Leather Workshop/Apothecary (Future Plans)
Fighter's Handbook. If he Intends to make any sort of all leather armor (hide armor, leather armor, and armored leather caps). The workshop is a leatherworker's shop. Including apparatus for leather soaking, scraping, tanning, boiling, boiling in wax, shaping, hole punching, sewing, and all the other processes by which leather is transformed Into armor. Such a workshop costs 25 gp plus the cost of the shelter where it is set up: An additional 25 gp for a large tent, an additional 75 gp for a well-crafted hut/workshop, or more as part of a larger dwelling (at whatever price scheme the DM prefers). (Included In the price of the leatherworker's shop is the cost of the tools necessary to make padded armor and armor linings and padding.)
Apothecaries Guild Member-PAID Enrollment + 1 Month Requirements to Join: Herbalist/Alchemist Proficiency; Must be nominated by an existing member of sufficient rank; enrollment dues 50 gp (6-month probationary period, can be ejected for any reason w/out recourse during this time) + monthly dues of 5 gp/month; oath of loyalty to the guild - will expose anyone practicing the arts of herbalism and associated preparations, with practice within the code of conduct of the guild which forbids the preparation of substances that are soley used as poisons, etc. etc.); cannot refuse reasonable requests of higher-ranking members of guild (e.g., assistance in preparation of materials, requests to obtain materials, etc. etc.); rank w/in guild will track with duration of membership & skill/proficiency in arts, but can be affected by services provided to guild (e.g., donation of materials, books, equipment, service to higher-ranking guild members, etc. etc); Benefits: licensed to practice herbalism and associated arts within the City freely (e.g., can purchase and open a shoppe); discounts on purchase of raw materials from city vendors; access to Guild library; can attend monthly feasts and occasional formal dinners/dances at guildhall; mingling and networking with guild members from across the city.
Alcquemiste's Guild Member-PAID Enrollment + 1 Month Requirements to Join: proficiency/Class as Herbalist, Alchemist, Wizard; must be Nominated by an existing member of sufficient rank; enrollment dues: 100 gp (6-month probationary period, can be ejected for violations w/out recourse during this time) + monthly dues: 20 gp; cannot refuse any reasonable request from higher ranking guild members (typically will be assistance in experiments, requests to obtain materials or research, etc); rank w/in Guild will roughly track with class/proficiency level, but can also be raised by actions or service supporting the guild (e.g., donating books or equipment or magical items, completing tasks from higher-ranking members, etc.; must take an oath of complete secrecy regarding the arcane relationships within the guild - discussions about such topics, as well as magical research and/or experiments, must be held on guild property or other safe locations designated within the city, and may only involve other guild members. Violation of this results in immediate ejection and blacklisting from the guild. It is strongly implied that that will be the least of your worries should this occur, as you would earn the immediate enmity of the entire guild membership, having put their lives and livelihoods at risk. Benefits: allowed open an alcquemiste (chemistry) shoppe that trades in mundane, non-magical preparations only (e.g., solutions used in ornamentation, construction, entertainment, etc.); access to the guild library; free Evening-feast meals at Guild Hall on weekends, fee admission to parties, balls, or galas held by the guild; membership benefits apply to allied guildhalls in other cities (will be city-dependent); ability to network and socialize with guild members (within constraints mentioned above)
Faryia is interested in all forms of Crafts. She enjoys weapon collecting of all sorts. Wishes she was of stronger build to be able to wear better armor when fighting but is happy with her magic and wishes to collect as many spells as she is able. Hopeing to one day have a large library of her own to read and learn from.
*Quiet and Soft when in the civilized areas and cities. *Fights like a caged animal when out of the Law controlled areas. *Soft spot for young orphans and infirmed
Fariya never knew her parents but surmises that one of them must have been a mist elf. Her earliest memories are of an orphanage in Al-Ma’ij, on the coast of Southeastern Jhon. Nobody told her where she came from - although it was quite clear to her that several of them did in fact know who her parents were.
Full of curiosity and unsure of her place in life, little Fariya become an incorrigible prankster and a font of endless questions. The head of the orphanage, a dour old Jhonian woman named Najeeba, would give her answers in the early morning, as she made her kavve over the fire; by lunchtime, she would be telling her to get on with her chores, cease her wondering, and trust in A’Salam to provide; by afternoon, Najeeba’s patience wore thin, and she would curse Fariya, and beat her if she caught her. But to no effect – the next day, the girl started the whole process over again as if nothing had happened.
Finally, when she was old enough, and it was clear nothing could satisfy her endless curiosity, Najeeba made arrangements to send her to the madrasa to get an education. "If you can't be pure of blood then at least, A'Salam willing, be pure of spirit," she said as they packed her meager belongings. She didn't quite understand what they meant at the time but, did what she was told.
The madrasa was set in a compound in the lush grasslands north of the city. It was a school for both girls and boys, though the sexes were kept strictly separated according to harajj law. Her inquisitive young mind took in knowledge like the desert drinks up water. The head instructor, an elderly Jhonian imam named Ghaazi-al-Assimi, noticed and admitted that, despite the disadvantages of her birth, she was one of his most promising students. It would have been a waste not to train her further. He expanded her curriculum beyond religious instruction, to include arts and science. Her curiosity was unbounded, and she excelled in all subjects.
One day, a tall, thin, dark-skinned man dressed in black robes and a black turban came to the school. Ghaazi did not introduce the man, who took a seat on the cushions in the classroom as lessons commenced. The man watched with interest as the day progressed, and at the mid-day meal, he rose and stayed with Ghaazi in the room, shutting the door behind last student.
When Fariya returned, Ghaazi stopped her outside the classroom. He smiled, and pointed down the hall towards his personal apartments. “Fariya, mufadil – go to my rooms; there is a man here who wishes to speak with you. Be not afraid – he will not harm you; indeed, he has a great gift to offer you.” To her surprise, Ghaazi gave her a gentle, chaste hug – something he had never done, before pushing her towards the hall as he turned back to the classroom. “Go, and A’Salam go with you.”
She walked down the hallway, feeling nervous for the first time she could remember. Normally carefree and unperturbed by tension in others, something was different about this. Reaching the door, she steeled her nerves, and entered.
The tall man was seated at Ghaazi’s low desk, looking down at a huge book opened before him. The text was unrecognizable to Fariya – which given her training, was already unusual – filled with diagrams, patterns, and complex illustrations as well as text that seemed to shift even as she looked at it. A steaming cup of tea sat next to him, and another, empty cup beside it. The steaming teapot near the fireplace hearth.
Looking up at her, he gently but firmly closed the book. “Welcome, Fariya aif-sulalatan,” he said, without smiling. “Please, sit down.” He gestured to a cushion appropriately far away from him, across the desk.
“Do you know who I am?” he said, looking at her. His eyes were green – piercing green, but cold, the look reminding her of a snake.
Seeing her shake her head, he continued. “Indeed, and there is no reason you should. But I have heard of you. Ghaazi has talked of little else for a moon. He pestered me so much I told him I would observe you and judge for myself.” He paused. “And I am glad I did.”
He took a sip of his tea, but did not offer her any.
“Now then, Fariya. Are you happy here? Do your studies hold your interest?”
Her mind raced. She didn’t know what the right answer to this question was.
“You understand my question, yes? I wish to know if you are satisfied with the learning this place can offer you.”
She opened her mouth, but nothing sensible would come out.
“Perhaps some tea would help you collect your thoughts,” he said. His gaze never leaving hers, he lifted a thin, robed arm, and snapped his fingers. The teapot rose, floated over to her silver and crystal cup, and began to pour, right next to the pages of the book. She held her breath, but as she watched, not a drop spilled onto the pages. When her cup was full, the pot tipped back, and floated back down from whence it started.
The man looked back at her. “Now then, have a drink – and tell me if you would learn things beyond what Ghaazi can teach you.” The cold green eyes smiled even if the lips did not.
It was, of course, and easy answer.
The man revealed his name as Shaheer el-Nagi al Bajj. He ran a school for gifted young people just north of the City, and had come down at Ghaazi’s invitation. He agreed with Ghaazi that Fariya had gifts that would be a sin not to nurture.
Shaheer made Fariya an offer – she would split her time, with one month at the madrassa, focusing on intensive religious education and the rights of the priesthood of The True Faith – to become an acolyte of the True Faith herself, and help spread the faith. The second month she would journey to his school, where he would train her in the arts of his profession. And the third month, he would arrange for her to learn the martial arts – fighting with sword, dagger, and bow – from a well-known instructor in town.
She would keep this schedule until A’Salam indicated she was ready, and gave them a sign to that effect. When this happened, she would be released, free to do as she pleased, with one small catch.
In return for the gifts of learning and the powers that came with them her three masters would gift to her; she would be required to complete a number of tasks for them. The tasks would be defined at the time – he would not tell her anything now. Sometimes they would require her to travel to far lands; sometimes they would be dangerous; sometimes she might find them boring; but they would all be for the greater good of A’Salam, and his servant, the Amir-al-Emirs, Great Sultan of the Jhonian Empire.
To her, this was not a catch – to escape the monotony that had gripped her in this city, to see the world, to bring honor and glory to her god and her adopted land – these were incentives, not impediments.
She agreed, and her new life began.
For the next several years, she felt like she may have made a mistake. The hours were long, the instructors brutal and unforgiving, and her progress seemingly negligible. There were nights she actually cried – something she had never done much – from exhaustion and despair.
But slowly, painfully, she did make progress.
At first it was barely noticeable – the day her weapons instructor, a large but agile older man known only as Hazm, did not put her on her behind during scimitar-training for the first time; the evening where after the lengthy prayers were recited, she turned to find old Ghaazi asleep with a smile on his face, instead of being cut off before the end due to a mistake; and the day she got some tea into the cup, as opposed to everywhere else in the room (or no place at all).
In her third year, there came the day where Ghaazi corrected her, and she argued back – she had said the prayer correctly! Ghaazi, normally so placid and kindly, turned red, his bushy white brow knitting. He turned and opened the holy book to the correct page without even looking, and still staring at her, placed his finger on the passage in question. She looked down, then up at him, but not in contrition. His eyes widened, and he looked down.
She had been right.
The next month, as she sparred with Hazm, one of his attacks caused her to trip, and she landed on her backside as she had many times before. Incensed, she rose, and they began again. His bemusement turned to concentration as she unleased a barrage of attacks, and then astonishment as, with an unexpected twist of her wrist, she sent his weapon flying across the yard.
He watched it land in the dust, then turned and looked at her, smiling.
And the next month, as the kettle settled back down on the hearth, she looked at Shaheer. As usual, his expression told her nothing. He reached down, bringing the tea to his lips.
But when the gentle breeze came from nowhere to blow the steam away before he could, his eyebrow arched. That was the most she had ever seen him react.
“It would appear,” he said, sipping the tea and setting it down, “that A’Salam has given us our sign. It is time. You are ready.”
mufadil = Jh., “favored one”
aif-sulalatan = Jh., “half-breed”
Fariya found it hard to sleep on the ship. She had never been on one, and the constant rolling and creaking unnerved her. She lay in the net hammock in her tiny room, thinking how her life had changed in such a short period of time.
After her teachers had agreed that A’Salam had provided the sign that they were awaiting, Shaheer met with her one last time in his compound.
“As we agreed, Fariya, you are now free. Your only obligation to us is what you agreed to – that you would accept tasks on behalf of your God and your Sultan to help our cause and to glorify the True Faith. I shall tell you what the first of these tasks is.”
He poured them both tea before continuing. “You will take a ship from here – a small boat, really – which will take you to Ajuhar-al-Sahir.” He noted her eyes widening and the smile creeping over her face. He frowned. “No, child – you will not be spending time in that most holy and glorious of cities. No, there you will simply transfer to an ocean-going vessel – the merchant ship Ja’laz – which is bound for the heathen land of A’thur-von,” he pronounced the name carefully. “You will arrive in a city of this land – called A’vis Ar’mwaa by the locals, I believe.”
“You will be met there by my agent – a man in my employ, Wissam el-Jabour ibn Edris. Wissam can be trusted by you in all things – he will be your support and your guide in this foreign land as you act on my behalf. Heed his advice. He will courier any messages I have for you – they will be sealed with my signet, so.”
He showed her the intricate design on the large ring of his index finger – a seven-sided geometric pattern, with a mystical symbol at each of the points.
He sipped his tea again, looking at her. “The first task you must perform after you arrive is to retrieve an item that has been lost – or stolen. A merchant caravan bearing goods from our lands arrived in this city and from there traveled west. The merchant was a Jhonian citizen of impeccable reputation and most sanctified temperament, and was a friend and colleague from times past.”
“The man wore a ring – a golden ring, set with a single red jasper stone, engraved with fine writing in Jhonian on the inside, and several symbols of our craft on the outside.” He paused, letting her commit this information to memory. “This ring is very important to our organization, child. You must find it and put it into your possession. You do not need to return it to me – keep it, it will be of use to you in your mission for us. But do not rest until you uncover its location and have made it your own, and do not let another possess it.”
“Once you are successful, let Wissam know. He will send word to me, and will contact you once I he has my reply on your next task. In the time between, you may do as you see fit and as your resources allow. But go nowhere without telling Wissam how to find you.”
After they finished their tea, he rose. “You should leave now child – the boat awaits you at the docks, and the sooner you set forth, the sooner you can perform your task.”
From that point on, things were a whirlwind. The boat to the Capitol – which she saw so little of as she was whisked to the large, fat looking merchant vessel, where she was quickly shown to her room and told to stay there, being the only woman on a ship full of men that would be at sea for a long time.
The ship set sail soon after. She had seen the lands of her youth pass by as it sailed from the harbor, watching the fertile fields slip away, to be replaced by the unending dunes of the desert. Then they cleared the mouth of the sea, and entered the open ocean, and even that passed from view. Now, there was nothing but the waves to look at in all directions.
A voice roused her from her thoughts. She listened, not having caught it the first time.
“Land! Land ahead!”
She sprang to the small window, looking out. At first she could see nothing. But then, a vague shadow, which darkened slowly, eventually becoming the outline of a coast. Finally!
The boat was slipping into a harbor soon after. It was guided in by small barges, through what looked like a maze of swampy hillocks of land strewn randomly throughout the harbor.
Gathering her things quickly, she opened the cabin door and rushed above deck.
The plank had barely been put in place before she was half skipping, half running down it. She skidded to a stop at the bottom, practically running into the man standing there.
He was tall – not so tall as Shaheer, but tall enough. He dressed in similar clothes – black robes, a black turban. But that was where the similarities ended. He was not so thin as her teacher, but it was his hair – flaming red, and thick – that was the first thing that one noticed about him. He looked at her with yellow-green eyes from under bushy red eyebrows.
“Mussa Fariya, I assume,” he said, giving a small bow and touching his forhead and lips in the traditional greeting. “Well met and welcome. I am Wissam el-Jabour ibn Edris. How was your journey?”
He made no move to help her with her pack or equipment as they turned to walk along the wooden docks. “I’m sure you are tired, but we must talk now, as I will not stay with you long so as to not alert those who might oppose us to your presence. You should make for an Inn in the North Wall District – it is not far, I will provide you with directions. There take a room and rest.”
“This Inn is frequented by soldiers, mercenaries, and a variety of other transients who seek adventure and fortune. I assess that it would be an excellent place to start your task – Shaheer has informed me of your purpose, but we will speak of it no more.”
“Learn what you can there. Let your investigation take you where it must to fulfill your purpose. If you find yourself in trouble, or in need, you can contact me – I have rooms at an Inn in The Embers – The Bird of Paradise. You may ask anyone where to find it, it is well known. Call upon me there, and if I am not available, leave word how to reach you and I will contact you soon.”
They came to an intersection. “I will leave you here,” Wissam said. “Follow this street to the west. Take the last major turn to the north and west before you reach the next gate on the far side of this section of the city. Very near that intersection you will find the Broken Oath.”
He gave another small bow, and touched the lips and forehead in the reverse order that he had done when they met. “Fare thee well, Fariya, until we meet again. Keep thyself to the True Faith, and be not corrupted by the infidels of this land, nor their blasphemous beliefs. You are a shining child of Jhon, the favored of A’Salam – blessed be his name. Go now, and glorify him with your actions.”
Wissam turned and walked away to the south and west. Soon, he was gone in the mass of people moving back and forth.
She looked down the street in the direction he had told her to go. Taking a deep breath, she strode off in that direction towards whatever fate A’Salam had in mind for her.
It looks down at them, the tongue flickering out again; then it extends a hand, holding something out to Fariya.
It is a bone disk – probably a shoulder blade of something large – which has been carved with many small symbols, none of which have any meaning to any of them – they neither look like glyphs or pictures, but possibly some strange combination of the two.
“Minethhhhhhhh. Acaozzashk. Takethhhhhhhhhh. To Red Ssssssssspinesssssssss. To Sssssssssshamanssssss. Sssssssssspeakssssss. Acaozzashk.”
It makes Fariya repeat the syllables of “Acaozzashk” several times, making corrections, always with more ‘th’ or ‘ss’ to the pronunciation. Finally, it nods its head.
“Sssssssssssth. To Red Ssssspinessssss. To Ssssssssshamanssssssssss. No onessssss elssssssssse. I sssssssssend. Acaozzashk ssssssssssend. You help ssssssssssshaman. You help Red Ssssssssspinesssssssssss. Thhhhhhhhen Red Ssssssssspinesssssss helptthhhhhh youssssssssss.”
In one swift movement, it turns and leaps away into the fog, and is gone.