Campaign of the Month: May 2011
The cards lay before you, and the bard turns them one by one. Her musical voice sends odd echoes through you, and you feel as if this moment has always been. You’ve dreamed of this moment long before it happened, or you’ve dreamt of a time when you remembered this like it was the past.
Elora’s voice wraps itself around you. And the cards turn.
[Elora will give each of you a brief description of each card, and it’s importance to you. The most important card to focus on is the Future card — it foreshadows a coming conflict or challenge that your character will face. It can provide some warning so your character can prepare, and a physical insight bonus to your rolls when you face your moment of destiny. ]
Past: The Tyrant
" A cruel man dominated your early years, and wrought much woe on the people he was bound to protect."
" You stand tall against the dark forces arrayed against you, and refuse to yield. Your friends, knowingly or not, look to you to for guidance and leadership."
Future: The Lost
" An ominous card — a wasteland of madness and despair, a place or time where nothing makes sense, and lunacy holds sway. This could be a warning against losing your identity, and all that is precious to your soul."
Past: The Empty Throne
“You lost someone dear to you, but their spirit guides you and strengthens you, even in the darkest places.”
Present: The Rabbit Prince
" A wily opponent, but bound to the winds of chance. Fell and dangerous indeed, the unpredictable warrior. The prince bears a broken sword to warn, that even the most skilled fighter can fall.
Future: The Cyclone
" Another dark card — a force that destroys all that it encounters. This disaster comes not from the natural order, but from the will and plans of intelligent beings."
Past: The Marriage
" A joining of two great forces, producing unexpected results."
Present: The Winged Serpent
" Knowledge and Prudence are two mighty keeps, joined by the bridge of Understanding. The Winged Serpent represents this bridge — knowing whether now is the time to strike. A mighty card indeed."
Future: The Owl
" The brutal reality of nature, removed from all remorse or compassion. The awful face of Necessity. The wolf pack grows stronger, as the weak are culled by winter’s fang."
Past: The Betrayal
“A cut that still bleeds deep in you, my friend.”
Present: The Forge
“Your strength has been earned in the fires of pain. You seek out further strength to finish your crafting. Be wary of the things you burn and bend along your journey.”
Future: The Rakshasa
" A malevolent force that holds others in a slavery of the mind. He awaits you in the House of Stone."
Past: The Tangled Briar
" Something deep in the history of your people has haunted you and your family for all the years of your life."
Present: The Unicorn
“You appear, always unexpected — and offer great bounty freely and generously from your heart.”
Future: The Demon’s Lantern
" A trap of extreme complexity and deviousness. You will need all your skill and cleverness to escape!"
Elora raises her hands, and smiles at you her eyes still shining with light.
“The magic still lingers — are there any others who care to glimpse around the bend?”
“Go ahead, cleric. If I’m going to be driven to madness, I want to know in advance if you’re to be the one driving the carriage.”
Past: The Keep
" A place of quiet strength and resolve, you carry it with you wherever you may travel."
Present: The Theater
“The gods have brought you on stage for a purpose. This is the card of prophecy, you are to be the voice of a great Truth.”
Future: The Fiend
" A card foretelling a great calamity and the death of many innocents. A dark beast grows closer, and it brings sorrow, death and destruction in its jaws."
Agnar stands silent for long moment, his grim eyes slowly searching the cards in front of him.
“Well. I like that bit in the middle about standing tall against the darkness and what not. Can’t say I’m as fond of the madness and despair at the end.”
He gives the bard a weak smile and a polite nod, then walks a few steps away.
“Well, I’ll be. Hmmmm, I get what you are tryin to say, maybe. Wait though! Talitha! Taliiiiiiitha! Come ‘ere sweet thing. Let this nice sangin’ lady play some cards for you.”
The blonde girl emerges from the crew quarters, with Crackers in tow. She comes and joins the semi-circle of adventurers, and sits with her knees folded. She nods solemnly at the assembled crew, and says, “What game are we playing?”
Elora waves her hands again, beginning the odd verses of her spell. The deck is shuffled as before, and the half-elf’s eyes glow. She reaches out and takes Talitha’s hand, whispering her name.
The deck ignites with green fire, crackling brighter and brighter making it difficult to see. The cards whirl into the air, orbiting the little girl like tiny moons. Three cards remove themselves from the cyclone and place themselves in front of the girl. They begin to burn, scorching the deck of the Lodestar. Elora speaks quickly, before the cards can gutter out.
Past: The Sickness
" A great sickness fell upon her people, a vast corruption that warped them body and soul."
Present: The Big Sky
" A moment of unequaled freedom and joy. Powerful change. The shackles of the old thrown off, as the green shoots push through the frosty earth.
Future: The Crows
“Thieves of light, coming out of the sky. A great loss.”
With a burst of green light, the three cards expire. The ash blows away, leaving three card-shaped burn-marks on the deck. The remaining cards flutter to the ground.
Elora clears her throat.
“That…that doesn’t normally happen.”
Elora gently hands each of you the final card from your spread, and smiles.
“A reminder. That you may overcome these shadows, if the Fates allow.”