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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

4834 Posts

Posted - 10 Nov 2006 :  01:12:18  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hello again, all. This time, a reply to Blueblade about Ed’s U-Con schedule. Ed doesn’t have a “final final final” schedule, but as of right now, it seems he will be participating in the following:

Friday, 2pm-6pm: Ed is DMing a FR 2nd Edition session (as for spectators “hanging out” and watching, Ed doesn’t mind, but that’s entirely up to the U-Con staff)
6-7 pm: a Welcome seminar or mingle (of some sort; Ed’s a bit vague on this, so he may not have full information on it yet)

Saturday, 2-3 pm: Secrets of the Realms seminar with Ed, Eric Boyd, Steven Schend, and Paul Kemp (free event)
Saturday, 7-8 pm: Bringing Fantasy Worlds To Life seminar with Ed (free event)

Sunday, 10am-2pm: Ed is Ed is DMing another FR 2nd Edition session
2-3 pm: Storytelling (“come to chat, ask questions, or just hang out”) with Ed (free event)

Ed wants you all to know that he’ll be happy to sign things whenever it doesn’t hamper some event he’s taking part in - - and he’s ALWAYS happy to talk to Realms fans. So don’t be shy; he’s an approachable guy! (I’ve approached him in all sorts of ways, over the years, but perhaps none of you had better try some of my gambits; I’ve no idea as to the specifics of Michigan state law )
P.S. To Jamallo Kreen: I will of course send your post straight on to Ed, but MY opinion is: the Libertine is "close," but a little too downbeat for most urban Realms upper-crust life. There's more mirth, whimsy, and high spirits in, say, Waterdeep than you saw in that flick.
love to all,
THO
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Neriandal Freit
Senior Scribe

USA
396 Posts

Posted - 10 Nov 2006 :  01:45:30  Show Profile  Visit Neriandal Freit's Homepage  Click to see Neriandal Freit's MSN Messenger address Send Neriandal Freit a Private Message
Chris isn't going to be at Secrets of The Realms is he?

If so, *tear*

"Eating people is wrong...unless it's on the first date." - Ed Greenwood, GenCon Indy 2006
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31388 Posts

Posted - 10 Nov 2006 :  01:54:22  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
Hey Ed,

My next question that I'd like to add to my running backlog of questions , was actually prompt by THO's own comments just this morning... Namely, this particular reply -

quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

As a player in Ed's "home" Realms campaign, my principal character faced and fought battle horrors almost a decade before any Neverwinter Nights game (or for that matter, the computer company that created those games) existed.
They are indeed more powerful variants of Helmed Horrors (and of course, Ed created both; not to mention Neverwinter, and even the name "Neverwinter Nights," which referred to a racy "talk of the town" chapbook circulated in Neverwinter. I recall Ed telling us about Jeff Grubb phoning him and asking if he minded a computer company "borrowing" the name.)
love,
THO

Now, recalling what few tidbits we've been told about "specific" chapbooks previously in the Realmslore, and through some of your earlier replies here at Candlekeep -- like the chapbooks dealing with social and court life in Suzail... I was wondering whether you could provide me with a brief synopsis of two-or-three other "city-specific" chapbooks that may be in circulation in two-or-three other well-populated cities throughout the Realms. In other words... chapbooks other than those that have already been mentioned both here and in existing Realmslore.

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Chosen of Moradin
Master of Realmslore

Brazil
1120 Posts

Posted - 10 Nov 2006 :  11:45:30  Show Profile  Visit Chosen of Moradin's Homepage  Click to see Chosen of Moradin's MSN Messenger address Send Chosen of Moradin a Private Message
Hello Ed and dear THO,

Three of my female players want to know a little more about dresses, clothes, and how much a rich adventurer will have to pay to stay atuned with the latest "noble fashion" in Waterdeep or Silverymoon. The PHB says that a royal vestment will cost 200 gp, but I think that some rich adventurers can spare something more to stay "at the best!" We already know that in Hethmeir´s Highboots, in Everlund, they can pay 1.000 gp in a pair of boots (Volo´s Guide to the North). To compliment, we are talking about a New Olamm bard, a Shadow thieves rogue, and an everlundian sorceress, all in the Silver Marches.

Dwarf, DM, husband, and proud of this! :P

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Sian
Senior Scribe

Denmark
596 Posts

Posted - 10 Nov 2006 :  21:34:16  Show Profile  Visit Sian's Homepage  Click to see Sian's MSN Messenger address Send Sian a Private Message
CoM ... remember that even though royal outfit costs 200 gp, then that is just a nice and wellmade outfit ... without any jewelry on it ... those cost additionally so that could easily run up to several 1000's if you want enough pling-pling on it :p

what happened to the queen? she's much more hysterical than usual
She's a women, it happens once a month
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Uzzy
Senior Scribe

United Kingdom
618 Posts

Posted - 10 Nov 2006 :  23:12:03  Show Profile  Visit Uzzy's Homepage Send Uzzy a Private Message
Hello Ed and THO!

I've got another question, this time on something other then Lliira!

I was wondering about the Theatrical scene in Waterdeep. Are many plays produced there? Are there any famous plays and playwrights, or even Theatrical companies? Does magic play a large part in some plays, to bring it more to life? Any famed critics? (other then Laeral/One-Eyed Jack. )

Any information on this would be wonderful. So, many thanks in advance.
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

4834 Posts

Posted - 11 Nov 2006 :  01:31:50  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Ah, another great question. On to Ed it goes.
Ahem. Hi again, all.
This time Ed answers createvmind’s query from June: “Since I've hit the NDA wall, are the Troll Hills and more exactly the ridge line from Lizard Marsh to Trollbark Mountains NDA as well. Because I would like to know what if any minerals and gems I could mine out of there if I were able to evict the trolls and any other possible tenants. Are there other tenants within those mountains? And are the Bowshot, The Way Inn, Liam's Hold and Gillian Hill still there, occupied along the Trade Way? Thanks in advance.”
Ed replies:



To answer the easy part first: YES, the Bowshot, The Way Inn, Liam's Hold and Gillian’s Hill all still exist, flourishing (meaning they’re SLIGHTLY larger/busier than they were when described in VOLO’S GUIDE TO THE SWORD COAST: e.g. Liam’s Hold is now home to 62 or so people, not 50, but the description Volo gave is still “correct”).
No, the Troll Hills and the shoreline from Lizard Marsh to the Trollbark Forest (note: no “Trollbark Mountains”) aren’t NDA, as far as I know.
That’s what that “ridge line” really is: a line of cliffs, where the mainland drops away several hundred feet into a strip of “broken land” rarely much more than a mile wide. This broken land is damp, salt-rimed country (so vegetation is either lichen or stunted), and consists of seacaves, hills of heaped-up seabed rock hurled ashore in the worst storms, rougher hills of rock broken off the cliffs and piled up below at their feet, and flowerpot-shaped “sea stacks” of hard, layered stone left behind in misshapen columns when the wind, water, and winter ice have carved away the land around them. All manner of creatures dwell in this shoreline strip of land: leucrotta, outlawed and fugitive (or washed ashore from shipwrecks) humans, amphibious creatures of all sorts, all sorts of monsters, and countless seabirds (whose eggs offer a plentiful food source for much of the year).
Veins of iron and dark clays that contain many sort of gems are exposed on the treacherous, crumbling cliff-faces (which sport hollowed-out caves here and there, some of them peryton, eagle, or other don’t-mess-with-me aerial creature lairs). Lava vents under much of this shoreline warm the rocks (and fresh water, percolating up through them) from beneath, making this coast a place of winter mists and survival for many creatures, rather than a region most life must vacate for the cold months or perish. In other words, if you can fight off the competing monsters, you can winter over in caves that get quite comfortably warm in their innermost, deepest corners.
Those same lava vents make deep mining in this region well-nigh impossible. The warmth also makes trolls avoid the area, which is why they keep inland, in the Trollbark Forest, and to the south, in the Troll Hills, and leave this area alone.
No one rules this desolate shore, which has no good landing-places or harbors, and there have never been large settlements hereabouts, so the land is relatively verdant and unspoiled. Atop the cliffs, and inland as far south as the northern half of the Trollbark, the most prevalent life are those same seabirds, small wandering herds of wild horses and other cloven-hoofed grazing animals, and hags. There are over a dozen known coveys of hags (trios of one annis, one green hag, and one sea hag) in this region, and they dominate local life. It’s rare indeed for them to fight each other openly (and they will in fact band together to battle formidable intruders like adventuring bands), but they carry on longstanding rivalries in which status is linked to performance in disputes with each other (i.e. getting your own way or besting the other covey is a small, bloodless victory, and those who “win” more often increase their influence). Werebats (lycanthropes whose non-bat form isn’t drow, but rather several sorts of giants) are known to dwell in cliff-face caverns near the northern end of this shoreline; their presence prevents the lizardfolk from expanding south along the entire shore, and they are in turn prevented from expanding south by the presence of wild foulwings, who lair along the southern end of the shore.
Adventurers have found various sorts of constructs of ancient make (Netherese?) half-exposed in the crumbling cliffs, that move into action (usually attacking living things near them) once freed enough to break free of their rock prisons. Small parties of Gond-worshippers from Lantan make frequent explorative expeditions along the broken country, searching for constructs they can dissassemble and study; often they are forced to hire adventurers to protect them from monsters that stalk them (as food that’s obligingly strolling within reach).
I’ll leave the Troll Hills themselves for another day. As their name suggests, they are dominated by many, many trolls.



So saith Ed, whose habit of mentally strolling around his created world, “seeing” it in his head, is awesome to hear when he describes his imaginary surroundings. He makes great chip-dip, too.
love to all,
THO
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
26799 Posts

Posted - 11 Nov 2006 :  04:26:54  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
Another question has just occurred to me... I was outside, gazing upward at the few stars visible thru the haze and light pollution. As usual, my eyes were drawn to the Pleiades -- which I've always known as the Seven Sisters, since long before I was paying any attention to fantasy fiction. Were the Pleiades part of the inspiration for Mystra's seven daughters, or is it just coincidental? As always, thanks!

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createvmind
Senior Scribe

465 Posts

Posted - 11 Nov 2006 :  06:26:25  Show Profile  Visit createvmind's Homepage Send createvmind a Private Message
Thundering applause from my soon to be heavily immersed adventurers, thank you much.
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Thangorn
Learned Scribe

New Zealand
76 Posts

Posted - 11 Nov 2006 :  09:43:16  Show Profile  Visit Thangorn's Homepage Send Thangorn a Private Message
quote:
Thundering applause from my soon to be heavily immersed adventurers, thank you much.


Drowning is baid mmmkay

A Land Far Away (ALFA)
A Forgotten Realms persistent world for Neverwinter Nights 1 & 2
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Lord of Bones
Learned Scribe

United Kingdom
77 Posts

Posted - 11 Nov 2006 :  09:44:25  Show Profile  Visit Lord of Bones's Homepage Send Lord of Bones a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

Hi again, all. This time Ed tackles a question from October 1th, 2005, posed by Lord of Bones: “Hello there! I have a question regarding the Simbul and her animosity towards the Red Wizards.
We all know that the Simbul is something of a loose cannon, and a bit of a crazy lady, but do you think she would attack (with intent to kill) a wizard she knew to be Thayan upon sight, or would it be more likely that she'd send him or her back to Thay via a handy spell, or alternatively capture the wandering Red Wizard?
Obviously this is going on the basis that a Red Wizard would be strolling through Aglarond, but I don't think they're fools enough to wear the ceremonial robes and reveal their complex tattoos at all times.
In addition, are we to presume that there has been any sort of relationship between the Simbul and Lauzoril since the book 'The Simbul's Gift'? It would seem that his personality has changed somewhat from "I believe Thay is destined to rule Faerun, but not a Faerun drenched in blood" to "let's march our armies upon our enemies" (at least according to the new FRCS.) The relationship between the two archmages was interesting to say the least. It's a pity it's never really been picked up on in any other book than that novel.
Any thoughts would be appreciated.
Thanks in advance,
LoB”
Ed replies:



Sorry I’ve taken so long (and I’m even sorrier to the scribes who’ve been waiting since 2004!) to get to your post. As for a known Red Wizard strolling through Aglarond in disguise: unless the Simbul was already very angry (due to events befalling in, say, the previous twenty minutes or so, or a day or so after a death of someone she loved), she would very much want to know WHY the Thayan was in Aglarond, and what they were up to, before she cut loose and destroy them. So use of a magical disguise (remember, the Simbul spends more time flitting around the Realms as a bird or otherwise shapechanged into “nondescript fauna” form than she does in her own shape, something recent Realms chroniclers often seem to forget) to shadow the Thayan, and then a magical invasion of his mind when he’s asleep if he doesn’t do or say anything enlightening before taking slumber, may be what she does if she doesn’t have pressing emergencies elsewhere.
If she’s enraged or in a hurry, she just might cast a delayed-blast chain meteor swarm or similar “Simbul special” battle spell into the unfortunate Thayan’s innards, and use another spell to fling him back to Thay charged to cry out that he has to get an important warning to the nearest zulkir . . .
Yet she CAN love Red Wizards, as her relationship with Lauzoril proves. A relationship that continues, sporadically, though not as “close” in nature as it was in THE SIMBUL’S GIFT. I agree that it’s a pity we haven’t seen more coverage of them, after that lone novel (and a greater pity that Lynn Abbey, whom I consider a great writer and a good friend, hasn’t written a lot more Realms books!) Lauzoril’s character continues to change, but it’s important for everyone to distinguish between the “public act” every Red Wizard puts on, to further their own standing (and survival!) within the Brotherhood and in Thayan society, and what they truly (and very privately) feel. Even Szass Tam has his soft side, and they all have their own little secret plans, diversions, and activities, from growing flowers to innocently burping little lasses and singing songs to them. (Trust me about this; I created almost every one of them, old Szass included.)



So saith Ed. Yes, I recall a certain dalliance between several Knights of Myth Drannor and powerful Red Wizards, circa 1982 or so . . . Szass wasn’t part of it, but I have always strongly suspected he was manipulating several of the Red Wizards involved, and spying on them and us through the eyes and minds of his puppets . . .
[delicious shiver]
love to all,
THO




Thanks very much for the response. Despite the wait, it has been well worth it! Thank you for treating your fans with such kindness Mr Greenwood and Lady Hooded.

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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

4834 Posts

Posted - 12 Nov 2006 :  01:00:49  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hello again, fellow scribes. Ed herewith makes reply to MaskedOne’s recent “semi-related questions,” to whit: “What would probably have occurred if the Karsus Avatar spell had been permitted to reach completion rather than Mystril suiciding to counter-act it?
What did Mystril believe would occur if the spell was permitted to go on?”
Dagnirion posted a suggestion, but Ed’s reply differs:



Ascension to godhood under those circumstances would have stolen power from all of the gods (to achieve the ascension and make Karsus a god, and to give him divine power), in a surge that Mystril was very much afraid (and probably rightly) that Karsus would have been unable to handle, mentally and physically, so he’d have promptly been ruined and the magic would have “surged” back and forth around Toril, doing great damage and spawning many wild magic “storms.”
She was also afraid that if Karsus succeeded in any way (survived, no matter how damaged), all of the other Netherese archwizards would have tried it too - - and collectively torn the fabric of the Prime Material asunder, destroying Realmspace and everything in it, or at least twisting it beyond all recognition and smashing all life cycles and ecosystems, dooming uncounted millions of living things to slow extinction. And all so one demonstrably proud, foolish, and cruel madman could have the shining toy he wanted, but couldn’t understand.



So saith Ed. Who after all, knows more about all of this than anyone else.
love to all,
THO
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Blueblade
Senior Scribe

USA
781 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2006 :  00:56:03  Show Profile  Visit Blueblade's Homepage Send Blueblade a Private Message
A question for Ed:
Are there still any BIG plot secrets of the Realms you haven't revealed yet?
No need to even hint at what they are (if there are).
I'm just curious if, after all these years of TSR/WotC products, all of your main ideas and planned events have seen print yet.
Thanks,
BB
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

4834 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2006 :  01:00:22  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi again, all. This time Ed tackles RevJest’s recent followup query to Ed’s Eilistraee lore-replies: “I am aware that the Realms are polytheistic. I just don't know what other gods a drow elf who worships Eilistraee would pray to? While I can understand humans trying to appease evil nature deities such as Umberlee and Talos, I don't understand why a drow who worships Eilistraee would pray to any other drow god given their dispositions. I can understand a drow elven wizard praying to Mystra, or even Azuth. Assuming they were familiar enough with their faiths. But who else? Would goodly drow worship the Seldarine? Would the members of the Seldarine ever respond to a drow?
That's where I'm confused. The polytheism in general in the Realms isn't confusing to me. It's the idea of polytheism in this unique circumstance. ie. What other gods can/do good drow elves turn to?”
Sian weighed in with: “hmm ... as far i'm aware then, if the drow proves themself the seldarine would respond”
and Faraer added: “RevJest, Checking Demihuman Deities, we see that most of the drow pantheon are Eilistraee's foes, so they aren't likely candidates for worship. Her listed allies are: Callarduaran Smoothhands, Haela Brightaxe, Lurue, Mystra, the Seldarine, Selûne. Elven and Faerûn gods that they come across on the surface. But I imagine, given her mythology of rescue, Eilistraee is a larger presence than usual in her worshippers' religious consciousness.”
Ed replies:



RevJest, Sian’s right, and Faraer nailed it. Eilistraee does loom foremost in the minds of most of her faithful (and of the drow gods, sometimes they “appease worship” Vhaeraun if they dwell in settled areas and are trying to find a secluded moonlit place [rooftop, interior courtyard, walled garden] to worship Eilistraee). In general, the most popular other deities for Eilistraee’s faithful to worship (listed in order of diminishing ppopularity, most to least) are Selûne, Lurue, Mystra, Milil, the Seldarine, Lliira, Eldath, and even Sharess. Followed by Callarduaran Smoothhands, Haela Brightaxe, and other human deities as individual preferences and situations suggest.



So saith Ed. Who’s done his share of naked dancing in the moonlight, down the years (though when I teased him about it, he said, “These days, if we danced together under the moon, it’d be more like you dancing around this shuffling, hairy, moonlit blimp”). Ahem.
love to all,
THO
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EytanBernstein
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
700 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2006 :  02:51:40  Show Profile  Visit EytanBernstein's Homepage Send EytanBernstein a Private Message
Gosh, I hope he's not doing naked dancing this time of year. It's pretty chilly in Ontario.

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Dargoth
Great Reader

Australia
4372 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2006 :  03:14:32  Show Profile  Visit Dargoth's Homepage Send Dargoth a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by EytanBernstein

Gosh, I hope he's not doing naked dancing this time of year. It's pretty chilly in Ontario.



Sounds like weve just found out where the Auril's Blesstide celebration came from

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Kuje
Great Reader

USA
7894 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2006 :  04:51:17  Show Profile  Send Kuje an AOL message  Click to see Kuje's MSN Messenger address  Send Kuje a Yahoo! Message Send Kuje a Private Message
Hi Ed,

I've been pondering over the connections between Earth and Realmspace and was wondering some things. I know that some of the Chosen, and THO mentioned that the Knights, have visited Earth before, so I was curious about some things.

What was it like for them to first see our world? I mean, FR is a lot different then modern earth, so it must have felt a bit jarring for them to experience modern Earth. Yeah, FR has some tech but nothing really like cars, air planes, etc. Electricity and the appliances that we use with it, etc, would seem strange to someone not used to them. Even most of our religion is different. I'm even wondering what those NPC's, if they learned about Earth religions, thought about the handful of deities that are worshiped on Earth from the pagan pantheons and in Realmspace. What other places, besides the places that are detailed in the Realmspace sourcebook in El's Holdout and the Wizard Three articles, have any of the NPC's been to when on Earth? And does some form of magic in D&D Earth exist? I dimly recall El saying so in one of the Wizard's Three articles, but I might be mistaken.

Wow, I guess this might be a hornets nest question, but I hope you understand the general idea of what I'm asking. :) In the next coming weeks or so, I've got some Realmspace questions about the planets other then Toril. Just a warning. :)

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Edited by - Kuje on 13 Nov 2006 04:56:03
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Besshalar
Learned Scribe

Finland
166 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2006 :  15:30:15  Show Profile  Visit Besshalar's Homepage  Click to see Besshalar's MSN Messenger address Send Besshalar a Private Message
Greetings sages.
I know this probably isn't the right place to ask but what is the castlemourn setting ? I just have to know ...

The large print giveth , and the small print taketh away.
-Tom Waits
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31388 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2006 :  15:56:15  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
Castlemourn is a new setting created by Ed.

Specifically...
quote:
Its people are unaware of their origins, the greatness of their history, or what disaster brought about the dark age that engulfed the land. Some three hundred years before the present, there existed a magical place of shining towers and marvelous wonders called the Realm of Castles. Legends tell of a great war against fell creatures that destroyed the realm, leaving scorched ruins and crumbling citadels. Whatever befell the realm was so terrible that the gods have isolated it from other lands.

No one is permitted to leave Castlemourn, and those who enter do so at their own peril, as adventurers, treasure hunters, and questors scour the land searching for relics, artifacts, and clues to the past.

Castlemourn is a post-apocalyptic fantasy setting where kingdoms fight for power through political intrigue and outright warfare; where the brave seek their fortunes in dangerous ruins, and where everyone fears the unspeakable evil that shadows the land.
You can download a free PDF of the Player's Guide to Castlemourn here:- http://rpg.drivethrustuff.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=12630

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Candlekeep - The Library of Forgotten Realms Lore
http://www.candlekeep.com
-- Candlekeep Forum Code of Conduct

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

Edited by - The Sage on 13 Nov 2006 15:57:17
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Besshalar
Learned Scribe

Finland
166 Posts

Posted - 13 Nov 2006 :  18:19:59  Show Profile  Visit Besshalar's Homepage  Click to see Besshalar's MSN Messenger address Send Besshalar a Private Message
Thank you kindly. It's just a friend of mine just said he bought the campaign book today .

The large print giveth , and the small print taketh away.
-Tom Waits
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

4834 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2006 :  01:53:41  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hail once again, fellow scribes of the Realms. Ed this time tackles RodOdom’s recent questions: “Dear Ed and Lady THO,
I must apologize for not thanking you both for the last few answers. I never take for granted what a privilege it is to be able to ask the creator of the Realms any question at all, and receive such generous, informative replies!
Have the sages and bards of the Realms heard of any romantic relationships between the civilized races and full-blooded orc or goblinkind? Of the perhaps thousands of such individuals out there, could a few of them come from, er, voluntary unions?”
I replied in the simple, unvarnished affirmative, and promised a more extensive reply from Ed. And here it is:



RodOdom, I echo dearest THO: you’re very welcome. I owe the life of the Realms (and certainly its continued existence as a published setting) to the love and attention of its fans, and intend to continue spinning lore for all of you as long as you want it. Now, I do have to eat, and the workload of paying writing jobs often forces me into short- (or even longer-) term hiatuses from lore-replying, but rest assured I’m not going to abandon the helm for good. Until death or mental incapacity stills my hands at the keyboard forever, that is.
And let me echo THO again when I say: yes, indeed, there are many romances between goblinkin and other races, and, ahem, “voluntary unions” (I wish you’d provided that handy term when I was a randy high school-aged lad) aplenty, too.
That’s not to say that “everybody’s doing it,” it’s just that orcs will mate with anyone and anything, and there are thousands upon thousands of orcs (they DO breed like the proverbial rabbits), so it doesn’t take many “unusual” unions to add up to many, many cross-species relationships and births (hence all the half-orcs). In some cases, willing human females “pass off” half-orc offspring as the result of being forced by orc raiders, but in many backlands where orcs are NOT a strong raiding threat, but merely scattered local dwellers, local tolerance of them is high unless they indulge in eating humans or demi-humans (and favored mounts, pets, et al). Orcs are strong and instinctively tribal; male orcs fight other males (of all races) to establish a pecking order, but hunger for someone to tell them what to do AND a family grouping to “belong to.” More than a few widowed women living through hard winters with their adult-age daughters have “taken up with” an orc male who hunts for, gathers firewood for, and defends all of the females - - and makes love to them all, too. [And before I hear those outraged moral cries, please remember that this is a fantasy world we’re talking about here, of my creation, and with quite different morals than “modern real-world Western” societies.]
There have also been instances of lone orcs encountering lone human or half-elven females (or males) and falling in love with them. Usually these relationships end badly, but some result in stable partnerships that last for decades. Most orcs tend to be dominant lovers, but some partners enjoy a submissive sexual role, while at the same time enjoying a dominant “you may bluster and do as you please in the small everyday things, but * I * have the real vetoes and underlying ‘first and last say’ in important matters” role in the relationship. And finally, there are masochistic and submissive orcs who can enjoy relationships with non-orcs without the merciless baiting and bullying their fellow orcs would give them (some orc warrens are like some real-world penitentiaries, wherein dominant males or females sexually enslaving weaker members of their own gender), and even a few orcs who hunger for the gentleness and sophistication of “civilized” races, and who sneak up on dancers venerating Eilistraee or elves dancing in forest glades just to watch, and weep at the beauty they cannot join. A VERY rare few have managed to join it.
I’ll give just two examples of such unions, one tragic and one not.
Amaundra Faeroethyr, a CG female moon elf Rgr7 of the High Forest, orphaned in childhood, was sorely wounded in a battle with orcs. A lone, outcast orc of a rival tribe found her, nursed her back to health, and they fell deeply in love and became companions, Amaundra eventually dying (willingly) of the revages of childbirth (they both knew birthing half-orc after half-orc child was harming her internally, but she refused to stop making love with her beloved Urthorkh, and neither of them dared to try to seek out anyone with magic - - who might well try to slay them out of disgust - - to try to “put things to rights” in her innards.
Dathanae Oumrau, a CG female human Wiz16 of Everlund (formerly of Neverwinter) was an adventuring wizardess who mastered shapechanging spells, and used them both to experience things she couldn’t as a human, and ultimately to escape being killed when her adventuring band got slaughtered in a winter battle with orcs (she took orc shape to “hide”). The orcs captured her, assumed she was an orc of another tribe, “enjoyed” her - - and one of them, Aeriskul by name, took a shine to her, took her as “his,” and defended her against the others. Eventually Aeriskul (who hungered to learn more of “civilized” life and ways, seeing nothing he liked in raiding every winter out of cold caves when he could live peacefully [he hoped] down in the farms year-round) parted ways with the others, but kept the shapechanged Dathanae - - and deliberately changed his behaviour from “you are mine” to wooing her. Whereupon Dathanae revealed her true nature to him. Aeriskul was scared of her at first, and tried to flee and hide, but Dathanae followed him, and a tentative courtship began that ended with the two of them happily in love, and using the shapechanging to both enhance their lovemaking and to enable them to accomplish many things (from reaching down high-in-trees fruit to changing shape so as to pass among humans without trouble) as they try to make a life together. Dathanae and Aeriskul are still together, after some twelve winters, and are very happy (they do not have any children, but Aeriskul doesn’t particularly want any, and so has never even asked Dathanae if she might be barren, or if she’s using magic to prevent conception).
None of this makes orc/other species relationships tolerated everywhere, let alone welcomed. Most elves (who dwell only with other elves, not in cities with humans) react with revulsion and hostility to an orc trying to woo them, or an elf/orc couple. Most dwarves find it hard to overcome their instinctive suspicions of orcs. And so on.
Yet as I said earlier, such voluntary unions can be rare indeed, and still add up to an impressive total when one counts them, across the Realms.
Traveling traders are tolerant by nature (or they don’t last long), and most other commoners only know local conditions: EVERYTHING may seem strange to them if they travel too far afield. So if an orc/human or orc/half-elf couple dwelling together in a cottage seems locally accepted, then . . . they’d guess it was all right. In this locale. They’d keep their mouths shut, in public at least (and might avoid the couple), but they wouldn’t run around crying, “That’s NOT right! Aren’t you going to DO something about those filthy crossbreeders, before I do?” (There’s no one-deity underlying moral system to back up that sort of reaction, for one thing, and all folk in the Realms grow up knowing about, and in many cases working and living close to, or actually with, individuals of other races. There is racism, but it’s based on specific grievances, sometimes “family-history” slights or complaints, not on fear born of ignorance.)



So saith Ed. In a VERY interesting and extensive answer. That for obvious reasons, would probably never appear in an official WotC Realms publication. As always: ask for Realmslore, and ye shall receive.
love to all,
THO
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

4834 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2006 :  01:59:34  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Besshalar, I'm AMAZED if the campaign book (the big fat hardcover setting book, not the Players Guide slim softbound) is out already, because I have a fair idea of when the "final final final" text was done. That would be one lightning-fast printer's turnaround.
Picture Castlemourn as a section of mountain-ringed seacoast crowded with more than a dozen lands (all sorts of governments and racial makeups), facing an arc of ore-rich islands enclosing a bay. It's three centuries after a hellish magical war that brought down civilization, so magic is still feared and mistrusted (except that every ruler wants to have some, up his/her/its sleeve). There are monster-roamed, "haunted" ruins everywhere, and questors who seek the lore of the past. Enter your PC adventurers . . .
For those used to Ed's detailed histories and colorful NPCs: check. For the feeling of realism and lots of play opportunities: check.
I can't wait!
love to all,
THO
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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31388 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2006 :  02:18:28  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 The Hooded One

For those used to Ed's detailed histories and colorful NPCs: check.
Not that I needed much more convincing about how much I'm going to love Castlemourn, but I certainly didn't mind hearing this!

Thanks THO.

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RodOdom
Senior Scribe

USA
509 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2006 :  07:15:25  Show Profile  Visit RodOdom's Homepage Send RodOdom a Private Message
Wow. My brother who came up with the question in a conversation about the Realms will surely be astonished by Ed's reply. Actually, it's an article, isn't it? Thank you! And ... wow.

Edited by - RodOdom on 14 Nov 2006 07:17:41
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Besshalar
Learned Scribe

Finland
166 Posts

Posted - 14 Nov 2006 :  15:05:07  Show Profile  Visit Besshalar's Homepage  Click to see Besshalar's MSN Messenger address Send Besshalar a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by The Hooded One

Besshalar, I'm AMAZED if the campaign book (the big fat hardcover setting book, not the Players Guide slim softbound) is out already, because I have a fair idea of when the "final final final" text was done. That would be one lightning-fast printer's turnaround.
Picture Castlemourn as a section of mountain-ringed seacoast crowded with more than a dozen lands (all sorts of governments and racial makeups), facing an arc of ore-rich islands enclosing a bay. It's three centuries after a hellish magical war that brought down civilization, so magic is still feared and mistrusted (except that every ruler wants to have some, up his/her/its sleeve). There are monster-roamed, "haunted" ruins everywhere, and questors who seek the lore of the past. Enter your PC adventurers . . .
For those used to Ed's detailed histories and colorful NPCs: check. For the feeling of realism and lots of play opportunities: check.
I can't wait!
love to all,
THO



Okay it must have been the softcover thing then I might have misunderstood. But it does seem like an interesting setting and it doesn't look like it will be too expensive either . ( But then what is when it comes to hobbies? )

The large print giveth , and the small print taketh away.
-Tom Waits
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