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Blueblade
Senior Scribe

USA
804 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  03:39:48  Show Profile  Visit Blueblade's Homepage Send Blueblade a Private Message
Ed, I'm looking at the notes I took when I played in one of your old convention adventures ("The Unseen King"), because I want to try to run it - - the feast with all the outrageous old drunken nobles spilling out into the Royal Gardens, anyway, making it up as I go along as I know you did [[yes, I saw when we were finished four fun-filled hours, and you were folding up your DM's screen, that your entire scenario is only TWO PAGES LONG, you rogue you!]].
Remember the guy with the green-and-black cheese? That tastes nutty and smoky, and loosens tongues like nothing else?
Okay, what is that cheese called, where is it made, about how much does it cost (rare/expensive, or fairly common/moderate, or - -?), and how is it made (what provides the milk, what other ingredients, anything special about the process?)?
Thanks!
BB
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  03:52:02  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hello again, all.
Rhewtani, Bakra, and Baleful Avatar: Baleful is remembering rightly. Ed will check to see what his notes have about those two ruins (he thinks he never wrote more than a couple of paragraphs).
Blueblade, I've sent your query off to Ed, too - - but I can tell you, because my character once landed on a wheel of said cheese (after unintentionally "dropping in" to a Cormyrean noble's kitchen), that the cheese you speak of is known as Roaroke (or "Rokeheart" in the Border Kingdoms, where it's popular but hard to obtain, so many inferior versions of it are locally made).
We will, of course, hear much more in the fullness of time from Ed.
And Rhewtani, Ed wasn't jerking your shackles; he WILL give you a proper reply, as soon as he can (right now, he's attending family funerals - - yes, again! - - and finishing up the judging for the Sunbursts; it's crunch time, where the judges battle it ouXXX ahem, debate their picks in order to come up with just one winner for the adult and the YA categories (for most scribes: the Sunbursts, which have gone by other names in the past, are Canada's annual best sf/fantasy awards, for adult book and YA book).
Oh, and Ed will have family visiting this weekend, so I suppose he'll be busy cooking, too.
love to all,
THO
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31690 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  05:19:58  Show Profile  Send The Sage an AOL message  Click to see The Sage's MSN Messenger address  Send The Sage a Yahoo! Message Send The Sage a Private Message
Ed, I've another question coming from my re-reading of the "Knights of Myth Drannor" trilogy. This time, I'm focusing on the last few pages of Chapter 8 from The Sword Never Sleeps.

Thus, I'm curious about this snippet:- '"Den of traitors, den of thieves," she muttered, remembering the old Suzailan song deriding the Court.'

What more can you tell me about this "old Suzailan song?"

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Knight of the Gate
Senior Scribe

USA
623 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  07:32:21  Show Profile Send Knight of the Gate a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

The map Blueblade's referring to DWARFS the City System map. We're talking over 20 17" x 35" inch white pieces of paper, with buildings drawn on them as black outlines ("empty boxes" not "filled in boxes"). A typical rectangular two-to-three or three-to-four storey Waterdhavian building, with street-level shop and two or three floors of living quarters above, is a rectangle of about 3/4" wide by around 1" long (in other words, the base of an old Airfix model soldier figure will JUST fit inside one, which is how Ed denoted where "the PC party" was, where Watch patrols were, where "bad guys we were following" were, and so on. Trees, ponds, public pumps, fountains, and statues were all included, too.
In other words, HUGE. Two lucky gamers, out there in the world, have copies of this (aside from whoever kept it at TSR, if it didn't just go into the dumpster): it was a "door prize" at a long-ago PHANTASM convention in Peterborough, Ontario (the Guests of Honor that year were Richard and Lilly Garfield, and Ed), and it was a charity auction item at a Milwaukee-era GenCon.
Ed didn't send it to TSR on 17x35 mapsheets; he sent it to them on foolscap-length photocopies, overlapped copiously to minimize photocopier "around the edges" distortion (so buildings would line up, and all distortions, by judicious cut-and-paste surgery, could be shifted into the "white space" of streets and alleys.
When CITY SYSTEM came out, all of us original players were greatly disappointed, not just at the small size of the maps, but at the "districts get strong color hues" rather than having cobbles, dirt, and building roofs. I'm a big girl; I can tell boundaries by myself by reading street names and referring to a 1-page district boundaries guide.
Ah, well . . .
love to all,
THO



I'm one of the lucky few with a copy of a copy of Ed's original Waterdeep map(s) PLUS the close-ups he'd done for the Volo's Waterdeep materials. It was all part of his turnover for the 1993 CITY OF SPLENDORS box and I've sneakily kept my 1.3 inch-think pile of 11x17" sheets of that map in a safe place. It was vastly helpful when I worked on Blackstaff Tower to check against some of the lesser known neighborhoods up in Sea Ward (as the foundations aren't apt to change, no matter how many times the buildings fall over). :)

Steven
who isn't gloating but noting that Ed (and Professor Tolkien) set the bar on how to detail a world for stories and hopes to put it to use sooner than later....



Dude, Jealousy is an ugly thing... so I'm gonna hide mine just now. I don't even know you, but I hate you a little for this.

Edit: I couldn't agree more with your last statement, Steven. In all of fantasy, the only creator I can compare to He of the Green Wood is Prof. Tolkien. I came to DnD looking for LotR-type immersion as a teenager and was mostly disappointed- till I found the Realms. It's all about Depth and Detail, and both of these masters of the genre give it to us.

How can life be so bountiful, providing such sublime rewards for mediocrity? -Umberto Ecco

Edited by - Knight of the Gate on 12 Jun 2009 07:40:15
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Menelvagor
Senior Scribe

Israel
352 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  14:43:05  Show Profile  Visit Menelvagor's Homepage Send Menelvagor a Private Message
Ed, this may seem like a personal question, and if so, I apologize, and don't answer, but I've got to ask:
Why is it that there are barely any details on your life on the web? Many other authors have information in many sites, detailing their parents, where they live, their spouses, etc. So why not you? Is it just the fact that nobody ever did it for you, and you don't have the time? Or is it that you don't want people to know?
Again, if this is offensive, please don't answer, and I apologize.

"Shall mortal man be more just than God? shall a man be more pure than his maker?
Behold, he put no trust in his servants; and his angels he charged with folly.
How much less them that dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation in the dust, are crushed before the moth?" - Eliphaz the Temanite, Job IV, 17-19.

"Yea, though he live a thousand years twice, yet hath he seen no good: do not all go to one place?" - Ecclesiastes VI, 6.

"There are no stupid questions – just a bunch of inquisitive idiots."

"Let's not call it 'hijacking'. Let's call it 'Thread Drift'."
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
14397 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  15:35:44  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message
quote:
Edit: I couldn't agree more with your last statement, Steven. In all of fantasy, the only creator I can compare to He of the Green Wood is Prof. Tolkien. I came to DnD looking for LotR-type immersion as a teenager and was mostly disappointed- till I found the Realms. It's all about Depth and Detail, and both of these masters of the genre give it to us.

There are other 'truly amazing' world-builders out there, but unfortunately, the majority of them write SciFi.

Two that spring to mind that are SciFi authors but read like Fantasy are Jack Vance (naturally) and Robert Silverberg (His Majipoor series could easilly be a fantasy world, and an incredible one at that).

For some reason, many modern fantasy authors think all you need to do is toss in a few Dwarves and Elves and send a group on some sort of quest, and then ignore the backdrop (which appears to be nothing more then a cheap medieval Europe knock-off in most cases). True world-builders are hard to come by these days <sigh>.

Edit: I feel the need to also mention the late James Oliver Rigney (Robert Jordan) - although I grew exasperated at the 'never-ending' aspect of his story(ies), I have to say that a lot of thought and amazing world-building went into his Wheel of Time series. Like the Realms, it seems that every little corner of the world had something interesting going on (which was part of it's charm, but also made it a nightmare to keep track of with all those sub-plots).

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 12 Jun 2009 16:16:47
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30340 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  16:01:42  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Menelvagor

Ed, this may seem like a personal question, and if so, I apologize, and don't answer, but I've got to ask:
Why is it that there are barely any details on your life on the web? Many other authors have information in many sites, detailing their parents, where they live, their spouses, etc. So why not you? Is it just the fact that nobody ever did it for you, and you don't have the time? Or is it that you don't want people to know?
Again, if this is offensive, please don't answer, and I apologize.



I think he's too busy sharing what's going on in his head to share what's going on in his life.

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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31690 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  16:21:12  Show Profile  Send The Sage an AOL message  Click to see The Sage's MSN Messenger address  Send The Sage a Yahoo! Message Send The Sage a Private Message
I've another question Ed. Perhaps I should just start a new backlog for this year, eh?

Anyways, this comes from my re-reading of The Temptation of Elminster from The Annotated Elminster compilation.

Specifically, I'm curious about the kingdom of Galadorna. We learn a little in the novel itself, and from your "Realmslore" notes in the aforementioned The Annotated Elminster. And given that the 4e shift now makes it highly unlikely that Galadorna will ever be featured in any future published Realmslore, I'm just wondering what more you could tell me about this kingdom?

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium -- Volume IX now available (Oct 2007)

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Zhoth'ilam Folio -- The Electronic Misadventures of a Rambling Sage
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
14397 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  16:22:16  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message
Because when it comes right down to it, Ed is a very private person. He greatly enjoys the time he spends with fans... but then likes to have time to do the things he enjoys (which may include the Realms, but go far beyond just them... Ed Greenwood as a person is much more then the 'Forgotten Realms' he is so famous for).

I find it so very distasteful that many of today's 'celebrities' (and I use that term loosely) like to 'Twitter' <vomit> about every little thing happening in their lives, as it happens.

Do we really care that Paris Hilton broke her heal this morning, or that Justin Timerlake just enjoyed a realy good BM?

Seriously... there are some things people should keep to themselves, and I applaud Ed for not flaunting his private life... thats why it is called PRIVATE.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 12 Jun 2009 16:24:58
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Drizztsmanchild
Learned Scribe

USA
216 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  16:35:49  Show Profile  Visit Drizztsmanchild's Homepage  Send Drizztsmanchild a Yahoo! Message Send Drizztsmanchild a Private Message
I know I will get some heat for this but this is something I've always wanted to know since I read both Drizzt and El's novels and I was wondering what El's view is on Drizzt and have they ever met? I know Drizzt met Khelben very briefly. Thanks and I'll prepare myself now for the ribbing I'm about to get
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Menelvagor
Senior Scribe

Israel
352 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  16:42:28  Show Profile  Visit Menelvagor's Homepage Send Menelvagor a Private Message
quote:
I find it so very distasteful that many of today's 'celebrities' (and I use that term loosely) like to 'Twitter' <vomit> about every little thing happening in their lives, as it happens.


I'm in complete agreement with you there.

Truthfully, I did suspect the answer would be a combination of both: He doesn't have enough time to actually put it on the web, and he feels his private life should remain private.

"Shall mortal man be more just than God? shall a man be more pure than his maker?
Behold, he put no trust in his servants; and his angels he charged with folly.
How much less them that dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation in the dust, are crushed before the moth?" - Eliphaz the Temanite, Job IV, 17-19.

"Yea, though he live a thousand years twice, yet hath he seen no good: do not all go to one place?" - Ecclesiastes VI, 6.

"There are no stupid questions – just a bunch of inquisitive idiots."

"Let's not call it 'hijacking'. Let's call it 'Thread Drift'."
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bradhunter
Acolyte

USA
2 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  18:17:30  Show Profile  Visit bradhunter's Homepage Send bradhunter a Private Message
Hello Ed,

I'd like to start off simply saying, "Thanks." I've played in the Realms off and on since the 80's and have always enjoyed it.

My questions come from my playtime in the new Living Forgotten Realms campaign. I'm not sure what, if any, connection you have with the RPGA, but my questions are strictly lore, so I hope you can help.

LFR allows a variety of monster races as PCs, namely gnoll, minotaur, and orcs (with a reward card.) Are there any examples of heroic members of these races that exist in your notes? It would be nice to have a few positive examples that a player could use as reference or even work into their backgrounds to support being "good" members of a typically evil race.

Warforged are now walking the Realms, as well. Since these were an Eberron race, a Dragon article explained how we could fit these into the setting. However, I was hoping you might shed some light on countries and cabals, historical or current, that might have created living constructs. Any notable constructs that were living/sentient/both?

The Dhampyr were introduced earlier this year as a bloodline. Do you have any "half-vampire" figures, individuals or even families/bloodlines of note? What would the stance of the Church of Kelemvor be on these creatures? They are not undead or unaging, but they do have vampiric blood and can feed on the living to heal.

Lastly, we have a race called Revenants coming up. It looks like this might cause a bit of a stir, with players of Kelemvorites seated at a table with a Revenant player. Can you think of any reason a member of that faith would work with an undead creature instead of outright destroying it? Any notable lore exceptions where the church ignored, or even allowed, the continued existance of an undead creature?

Thanks in advance for any response you may give. A lot of players don't bother worrying about the lore of the world or the background of their characters, but I'd love to find any way to make these things fit better in the Realms at least for my characters, friends and some local gamers.
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  18:47:05  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi again, all.
bradhunter, Ed will be providing some details of heroes of the "monster" races (he's named a few already earlier in this year's iteration of this thread). Ed is a Charter Life Member of the RPGA, and is quietly working behind the scenes with at least two regional groups (that is, the gents and ladies who write the adventures for an area of the Realms) that I know of. Your questions have been sent off to him, and hopefully we'll soon see answers.
Menelvagor and Markustay, it's really a function of time; Ed holds down several jobs, and could spend all his waking hours NOT writing or designing, if he let himself be lured into all the distractions. Two of the organizations he works for (or with) have strict rules re. what should be self-posted on the Net to help prevent identity theft, and as Ed will tell you (as he replied to a library director re. why he didn't blog and livejournal):

I find my life incredibly interesting, but that's because I'm living it. :}
That is, I'm learning and researching and creating and mulling over stuff. Yet the daily humdrum stuff is just that: daily and humdrum. Why should anyone else CARE? I'm just not that self-centered, I guess. I suppose I could and should self-promote, but many of the writers who do that manage to produce about a book a year. Why not use that time to do FIVE books a year - - (as I, instead, do)? Yes, I may kill more trees, but I'm also getting better as a writer - - and I might get run over by a truck tomorrow, and then it'll be a little too late to write the great books I might have gotten around to doing someday.


So saith Ed. Who also, as cribes here know well, spends a little time almost every day writing something for us, here.
love to all,
THO
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30340 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  19:31:08  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by bradhunter

Warforged are now walking the Realms, as well. Since these were an Eberron race, a Dragon article explained how we could fit these into the setting. However, I was hoping you might shed some light on countries and cabals, historical or current, that might have created living constructs. Any notable constructs that were living/sentient/both?


I've been working on a couple of ideas for making warforged that have a uniquely Realms-based creation story... One of those ideas is still in development, and I'm hoping for Ed's input on the other idea (which is fully written up).

Page 42 of Halls of the High King said this about helmed horrors:

quote:
In some cases, however, the orders of a horror allow it autonomy in the absence of commands, or are simply silent on the subject of a Horror's freedom. If not specifically commanded to cease existence at the death or behest of their creator, horrors will continue operating until destroyed.

Some horrors have been encountered as bandits or adventurers. At least one horror, Aragus, leads a small caravan company operating out of Waterdeep. It communicates by writing, gestures, and (with its underlings) a tapping code. Other horrors have been found in groups, wandering the wilderlands or exploring old ruins. Horrors never seem to willingly fight other horrors.


When I read this, I asked Ed about Aragus. Here's his reply:

quote:
Hi again, all.
This time I bring some brief words of Ed in response to Wooly Rupert’s Helmed Horror queries: “That of course got me wondering (especially since I've always loved helmed horrors). Is Aragus still around? What are its goals? How is it treated by the folk of Waterdeep? What is its legal status (as in, is it considered a citizen, and if not, what rights does it have?)? Can helmed horrors gain levels or class abilities? And lastly, are there other noteworthy independent helmed horrors out there?”
and:
“And as an addendum to my previous helmed horror questions... Can they be created without the use of a corpse and/or the Doom of Bane spell?”
Ed replies:



Hi, Wooly! Yes, Aragus is still around, but has “faked” its own destruction and is now keeping a low profile, with rooms it can hide out in, in both Dock Ward and North Ward, and using a hargaunt (see my current Knights trilogy of novels) to give it various lifelike “human face” masks.
Its goals remain mysterious (as in, both NDAs and my own unfolding campaign needs to remain silent apply). Most folk in Waterdeep consider Aragus to be “no more” (some Lords know better, but are keeping silent for their own reasons.
No, helmed horrors can’t gain levels or class abilities in the same way that PCs can. They CAN be augmented by wizards (and if playing 3e, insert applicable prestige classes here) of sufficient power and learning, so as to gain hit points, better attacks, particular abilities, etc.
Yes, there are other noteworthy Helmed Horrors active in the Realms right now (I have to check with certain mysterious WotC personages to see if some current NDAs prevent me from discussing two of the most famous/infamous, so I’ll return at some later date with more . . . or not).
And yes, there are several other methods of creating helmed horrors besides using a corpse or a Doom of Bane spell. Magic armor can be mated with a wraith (by means of the right sequence of spells), for one (and other undead can serve, to be “bound into” armor; even simple animated skeletons can be put into armor and spells used to create a crude facsimile of a helmed horror. Augmented battle horrors (the feather fall, dimension door, and magic missile-hurling variants, only “powered up” to do worse things) can be made by a variety of magical processes, and at least one priesthood (Gond’s) has been seeking to craft its own guardian helmed horrors through rituals and prayers (that is, divine magic only, with nary an arcane spell involved; BTW, they have done this thus far unsuccessfully).



So saith Ed.
And I’d like to add a personal postscript to dalor: certainly you can ask me things, and I’ll be quite happy to answer. I’ll probably post an answer to your question that Sage redirected here, tomorrow, but I must run now. The phone we nicknamed “the Bat Phone” years back is ringing, and that means urgent work . . .
love to all,
THO

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 12 Jun 2009 19:31:42
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Blueblade
Senior Scribe

USA
804 Posts

Posted - 12 Jun 2009 :  21:38:39  Show Profile  Visit Blueblade's Homepage Send Blueblade a Private Message
And there have been quasi-vampires of various sorts in the D&D game since the first edition, and therefore in the Realms, too. I remember a "secret society" of them in Waterdeep in an early Ed-GenCon-run Realms adventure.
BB
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31690 Posts

Posted - 13 Jun 2009 :  01:34:29  Show Profile  Send The Sage an AOL message  Click to see The Sage's MSN Messenger address  Send The Sage a Yahoo! Message Send The Sage a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Blueblade

I remember a "secret society" of them in Waterdeep in an early Ed-GenCon-run Realms adventure.
I remember reading something about that on the REALMS-L. But that was a long time ago. Could either Ed or yourself provide some further details about this adventure?

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-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

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"So Saith Ed" -- the collected Candlekeep replies of Ed Greenwood

Zhoth'ilam Folio -- The Electronic Misadventures of a Rambling Sage
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Zandilar
Learned Scribe

Australia
313 Posts

Posted - 13 Jun 2009 :  05:03:00  Show Profile  Visit Zandilar's Homepage Send Zandilar a Private Message
Heya,

Half and/or partial vampires have always bugged me.

Firstly, if the state of being a vampire is curse - how can you have someone who is only half cursed? Isn't that a bit like saying a woman is a little bit pregnant?

If the state of being a vampire is a disease, then you can't half way pass on a disease. That is like above, being a little bit pregnant.

If a woman is bitten by a vampire when she's pregnant, she dies. When she dies, so does the child she carries (because that's just how it works without medical intervention). And when she rises as a vampire, either the child inside her is still dead, or it too lives again but will be a full vampire, and will never be born because the woman's bodily functions no longer work in the same way. So no half or partial vampires there.

The only way this could work is if vampires are an actual race (which they're not in DnD, as they're a template you pop on top of a PC/NPC - the PC/NPC is still their race, but is also a vampire), and are both capable of impregnating someone and genetically compatible with humans (or whatever). A child born of a living member of <insert compatible race here> and a vampire would be a half vampire. This would only work with a male vampire and a female <insert race here>, since female vampires would most likely be incapable of having a child.

So, after all that extrapolation on my behalf, here's my question - Ed... How do half or partial vampires work in the Realms?

Zandilar
~amor vincit omnia~
~audaces fortuna iuvat~

As the spell ends, you look up into the sky to see the sun blazing overhead like noon in a desert. Then something else in the sky catches your attention. Turning your gaze, you see a tawny furred kitten bounding across the sky towards the new sun. Her eyes glint a mischevious green as she pounces on it as if it were nothing but a colossal ball of golden yarn. With quick strokes of her paws, it is batted across the sky, back and forth. Then with a wink the kitten and the sun disappear, leaving the citizens of Elversult gazing up with amazed expressions that quickly turn into chortles and mirth.

The Sunlord left Elversult the same day in humilitation, and was never heard from again.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30340 Posts

Posted - 13 Jun 2009 :  07:34:11  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Zandilar

The only way this could work is if vampires are an actual race (which they're not in DnD, as they're a template you pop on top of a PC/NPC - the PC/NPC is still their race, but is also a vampire), and are both capable of impregnating someone and genetically compatible with humans (or whatever). A child born of a living member of <insert compatible race here> and a vampire would be a half vampire. This would only work with a male vampire and a female <insert race here>, since female vampires would most likely be incapable of having a child.


Of course, with vampires being undead, it does beg the question of how well certain portions of the anatomy continue to function, if they function at all... This is a thought that crossed my mind when designing my own (now abandoned) half-vampire character.

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Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31690 Posts

Posted - 13 Jun 2009 :  09:07:18  Show Profile  Send The Sage an AOL message  Click to see The Sage's MSN Messenger address  Send The Sage a Yahoo! Message Send The Sage a Private Message
The concept of the dhampyr is a curious alternative. Brian James notes some particularly creative ideas in his "Playing Dhampyr" article from DRAGON #371.

In fact, I've always thought of Blade the Vampire Hunter [from Marvel Comics] as being somewhat akin to a dhampyr in D&D terms, given that his mother was bitten by a vampire [Deacon Frost] during Blade's birth. This resulted in Blade being born with certain quasi-vampiric traits, much like the classic interpretation of the dhampyr.

Candlekeep Forums Moderator

Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
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-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium -- Volume IX now available (Oct 2007)

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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
14397 Posts

Posted - 13 Jun 2009 :  15:40:02  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message
Thinking of them as Necromungers - Half-dead - from The Chronoicles of Riddick movie is a possibility, although I usually think of Shades as being Necromungers (same concept, especially in 4e, since the Negative Plane got rolled into the Plane of Shadows)

In fact, now that I think about it... aren't half-vampires (Damphyrs) rather redundant with Shades? How many half-undead do we need in D&D?

Blade worked because he was unique, but if you were to create a 'race' of these, I'd go the Underworld route (where, apparently, Vampires cab stil have children).

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 13 Jun 2009 15:41:57
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
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Posted - 13 Jun 2009 :  16:23:26  Show Profile  Send The Sage an AOL message  Click to see The Sage's MSN Messenger address  Send The Sage a Yahoo! Message Send The Sage a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

Thinking of them as Necromungers - Half-dead - from The Chronoicles of Riddick movie is a possibility, although I usually think of Shades as being Necromungers (same concept, especially in 4e, since the Negative Plane got rolled into the Plane of Shadows)
I initially wandered down that route of thought as well, until I started speculating on the possibility that CoR's "Underverse" was actually more like D&D's Far Realm. At which point, I began looking at the necromungers/necromongers as pseudo-natural-type half-dead entities.

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Scribe for the Candlekeep Compendium -- Volume IX now available (Oct 2007)

"So Saith Ed" -- the collected Candlekeep replies of Ed Greenwood

Zhoth'ilam Folio -- The Electronic Misadventures of a Rambling Sage
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 13 Jun 2009 :  17:06:29  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hello again, all. EdAppel, I have the pleasure to present the long-promised Elminster message to Alan, from Ed writing as Elminster:




To Alan,
From the hand of Elminster of Shadowdale,
This:


Word hath come to me lately of thy recent sojourn in durance vile.

I set down these few words not merely to congratulate thee on thy release, nor to hearten thee down the rest of thy days, but to extend the hand of friendship and let ye know that there are other wayfarers through life who honour thee and understand thee. The one I know as EdAppel, for one. Even when companionship cannot be directly seen or touched, thou art not alone.

Now that thou hast known a cage, and seen something of the darker sides behind the faces of thy fellow men, reflect: ye still live, and breathe, and are stronger for the experience.

Trite words, those, I know. Others have said them before, and no doubt they shall be said again. Yet a truth lies in them, for we are strengthened by every experience we survive. “Enriched” is the currently-popular word, I believe. We cannot help but be enriched, for a life is no more than a collection of experiences, and what their remembered colour and lessons lend to us as we face later experiences.

Think of thy life as a pathway ye are building through an unknown, mysterious, mist-shrouded land, a forest or jungle. Ye never know what lies ahead, and may even question why ye are making the journey. More than that, every flagstone ye set down has its cost to ye. Yet ye are on the path before ye truly know ye have begun it, just as all others are on their paths. Our paths may cross, or run together for days or months or years, yet in the end our path is - - must be - - our own. We all make choices, all the time, and some of them turn out to be mistakes, or less bright than other choices we might have made, yet the time of that particular choosing lies behind us, and we cannot go back.

So, in the end, we are left with three sorts of choices: to refuse to choose, and drift aimlessly, restless and accomplishing little and tasting more and more dissatisfaction; to choose recklessly, not really caring or letting anger rule us or the excitement of the moment and hurling aside judgment, consideration, and counsel; or to choose with thought and deliberation the route of our path, its way marked by choice after choice. The last way can be hard at times, yet also holds the most satisfaction, for however unwisely we choose, we at least have chosen, have taken some hand in deciding and shaping our life.

Ye did not choose that cage, nor the time spent there. Yet having tasted it, ye can draw from those memories and call on their teachings in thy time ahead. Ye can look back and take pride in surviving that dark time, and take it up like a bloodied and battered suit of armour, and say, “I wore this.” More than that: “I wore this, and lived to look back and gaze upon this armor. If ever I must put it on again, I will know what I am putting on - - and know that I can survive through it, for I have survived before.”

Not everyone lives that deeply, ever. Not everyone is tested and tempered in flame. The old warrior who has scars can be proud of them in a way that the naïve young maiden can preen in her beauty, but any pride she takes in it is empty and foolish, for it has cost her nothing, and so she knows not its price, and is not mindful of the weights of life. The darkness that makes warming flames all the brighter.

Hold on to those flames, and do not forget your time of imprisonment. Be as the bars that confined thee: patient, enduring, uncomplaining. If ye remember fear and anger, close thy hand around it and keep it safe and stored, ready to be a weapon when needed - - but wielded well, not foolishly, wildly, and to no good end.

Let it be thy inner flame, a flame that faileth not, until the day of thy passing - - and let that day be a long way off, after the deaths of all who put thee in the cage. Endure, outlast, and be stronger.

For it is the only good way to build thy path, and the best prize of the hard work of building.

Know quiet pride, and wise peace, Alan. Ye are not alone.

And ye do NOT lack armour, nor the respect of thy friends. Walk tall.


Until next,

Elminster of Shadowdale



Whooo. So saith Ed.
love,
THO
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Asgetrion
Master of Realmslore

Finland
1564 Posts

Posted - 13 Jun 2009 :  17:12:36  Show Profile  Visit Asgetrion's Homepage Send Asgetrion a Private Message
Milady THO, I think you can answer this question without bothering Ed:

I used Maglor and his son as antagonists in my Eveningstar campaign years and years ago, and that prompted me to ask how common are apothecaries in the Realms, i.e. would smaller settings (anything smaller than a city) rather have herbalists than apothecarists? How often have you encountered them in the "Home" Realms?

"What am I doing today? Ask me tomorrow - I can be sure of giving you the right answer then."
-- Askarran of Selgaunt, Master Sage, speaking to a curious merchant, Year of the Helm
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
14397 Posts

Posted - 13 Jun 2009 :  23:24:13  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message
Funny you should ask that.

I was just re-reading Realms of Infamy the past couple of days (scouring it for lore), and just last night I read a pretty good story about an Apothecary in a small Sembian town in that tome. He specialized in poisons (for an assassin), but his knowledge-base extended far beyond that, and he even had some substances from as far away as Wa.

The story was called And Wringing of Hands - I thought it was rather unique to have an apothecary as the main character.


"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone

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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 14 Jun 2009 :  01:18:00  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi. Well, the answer to that would be: fairly often.
Almost every non-wilderness rural place has a herbalist or two (plus "old family remedies" everyone else knows, from farmers to foresters to shopkeepers), and "some" villages have an apothecary if they're on a trade route. Almost all market towns have an apothecary (and a "hedge wizard").
If a village NOT on a trade route has a shrine (as opposed to just a priest or hermit), the priest who tends the shrine often functions as an apothecary (to earn an income). If a shrine has two or three staffers (even if only one of them is a proper priest), an apothecary is likely to be on that staff.
We Knights encountered apothecaries many, many times. Some of us even killed several apothecaries during play (always for very good reasons, of course; tried to poison us, was a known Zhent spy who attacked us, et cetera).
love,
THO
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