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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 17 Jul 2007 :  03:11:03  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi again, all. This time Ed makes answer to ziresta, in regards to these queries: “I have a few questions and comments for Ed. None of this is urgent, so take your time responding.
1) Thank you for creating the Forgotten Realms. It's the only setting not of my creation that feels "real" to me.
2) Thank you for putting so much detail into the Realms that I don't feel like I'm a lunatic for putting maybe a quarter as much into my campaign/story settings. (My eventual goal is as much, but I've only been working at creating settings seriously for about three years so I'm still very far from it.)
3) In 1368 DR in Cormyr, what would the general reaction of nobles to the third (or fourth, can't recall) daughter of a lesser noble being part of an adventuring band be?
4) Any details/lore you can share on Lliira or Selune worship in the same time and area?
5) Really weird question, and backstory necessary so it makes sense: In another game I'm running, one of the PCs has invented a time/world hopping device (essentially the continua craft from The Number of the Beast by RAH) and is planning to use it to visit, among other fictons, the Realms. So, my question is how would the residents of Shadowdale (where she most wants to visit . . . she's enamored with Storm) respond (in the late 1360s, in case it matters) to the following characters landing in a strange craft in their midst:
a) A girl in her late teens with a platinum dragon tattooed on one arm and a chromatic dragon on the other. This is the inventor of the device, a brilliant, but highly eccentric, engineer and physicist.
b) A boy in his late teens in a kilt who has a tendency to say whatever he's thinking, regardless of how inappropriate it is. He's a musician and has come along with his friend to be exposed to different realities' music . . . and meet hot chicks. Protective of d, his wife, to the point of fool-hardiness.
c) A teenaged girl, very petite, with a habit of dying her hair random colors, who has come along because her fiancée (a) was so excited about the trip.
d) Another girl in her late teens, a xenoanthropology student, who is the only one of this group possessed of much common sense . . . which is why she insists on coming along, she'd rather her best friends didn't end up in jail in some weird reality. At the time they'll go there, she'll be just beginning to look pregnant.
They're from about 2391 AD and grew up on a planet about 200 light years from here thats guiding moral principles amount to "Don't harm others or their property without a very good reason."
(Yes, I'm assuming the Realms will survive that long . . . why not? Besides, even if it doesn't, they've already travelled to our real reality and visited a bookstore.)”
Ed replies:



1. You’re very welcome. I work at the Realms every day to make it seem more “real,” and I hope I succeed more than I fail.

2. You’re welcome. Not everyone wants as much detail as I provide, but I would rather that they choose what they want and ignore the rest, rather than have “nothing” when they go seeking lore. (After all, this is a setting people are paying for; I believe in providing harried DMs with my work, so they can concentrate on acting, plotting, and describing to make play memorable and exciting.) Thankfully, there are many dedicated people who agree with me, and have written, designed, and edited for the Realms down the years to back up and augment my lore, giving the Realms far more depth and colour than I’d ever have had time to do, all on my own. Yes, it takes time, as I’m sure you’re discovering. :}

3. Most nobles wouldn’t care one way or another, except as a source of gossip (assuming she didn’t loudly announce any intent to overthrow the Dragon Throne or slaughter Obarskyrs or many nobles, that is). Some of her elder kin (the “gossipy aunt” sorts) might be scandalized, or profess to be (all the while enjoying the juicy gossip, inventing tales if they could get none, and wildly embroidering all they did get). The aging uncles would be gruffly approving, and be just as hungry for the gossip. They’d LOVE it if she was good-looking, and any whiff of hanky-panky surfaced (cavorting nude in bedchambers, seductions, that sort of thing). A few stiff-necked conservatives among the nobles would pounce on it as “more proof” of how “decadent and ill-behaved our younger nobles are becoming, these days!” and would “cut her dead” at social meetings or pointedly exclude her from invitations to their feasts. However, far more nobles would eagerly invite her to feasts and revels, as an “attraction of passing interest.” Nobles disapprove of adventuring bands that rob nobles or burn things, but don’t care a whit if they break laws or damage Crown property (because they like to see the Obarskyrs “taken down a peg or two”). Young nobles might well become her fans, look up to her, and covertly help her whenever they could - - and the young rakes would be dying to seduce her, “just because” she’s now dashing and notorious. More than a few of their bored fathers would fall into this category, too.

4. In Cormyr of 1368 DR, worship of Lliira and Sêlune is flourishing, though neither are among the “foremost faiths” of the realm. As with many other faiths, nobility tend to worship in private chapels, and the public in public temples or out-of-doors services (Jester’s Green north of Suzail, for example). Specifically, nobles and the wealthy would venerate Lliira in revels (dedicating them to the Joybringer and inviting clergy to participate), and Sêlune by night, in private outdoor gardens or woodland glades at their hunting lodges across the realm. Commoners and rural folk would venerate both goddesses out in the countryside, Lliira around bonfires (with drinking, games, “chases” and lovemaking), and Sêlune in the moonlight (with soft singing and prayer, and the drinking of water that has been gathered in vessels and touched by moonlight). The worship of Lliira is largely noisy and energetic, the worship of Sêlune largely quiet and still (though on a personal level, a lone individual can sing a happy or comedic song to Lliira in prayer, and sing a happy or wistful song to Sêlune in prayer, and both are sufficient). Devout worship of Lliira is believed to lead one into the graces of Tymora (good luck), and devout worship of Sêlune is believed to protect the wayfarer (especially at night) from becoming lost, straying from the notice of others, and from surprise attack by beasts or brigands. Numerous clergy of either faith can readily be found, though there are few really powerful priests of Lliira in Cormyr (and the most powerful clerics of Sêlune tend to dwell in the wooded backcountry more than in the cities).

5. Reactions in Shadowdale to the arrival of such strangers would not be negative unless they wantonly attacked locals, wore Zhent emblems, or loudly professed Zhent loyalties or membership. None of which seems likely from your description of the characters.
Specifically, strangers are “the norm” passing through Shadowdale, and those who tarry are watched closely by the Harpers to make sure they’re not Zhent spies, but presumed by most people to be either Harpers (here to visit Storm) or Zhent spies whom the Harpers will soon deal with; either way, they are treated with cautious courtesy.
Character A: The dragon tattoos will attract interest. Storm will be eager to host her at the farmhouse, to learn who she really is. If the character “came on” to Storm or wanted to dwell with her, Storm would readily accomodate; she isn’t adverse to the company of bright, not-actively-unpleasant females in either sense.
Character B: His trait of speaking plainly might well get him in trouble on an individual basis, but in general Dales-folk admire such a trait. Nor do kilts seem strange; many men in the Dales often wear skirt-like loincloths, particular when expecting to wade in wallows, streams, and berry-bogs. As for meeting hot chicks, the dale can provide a few, and Storm and her fellow Harpers would be amused by (and generally welcoming of) any advances, leering, or flirtations. Nor would they think ill of him behaving in such a manner when wed; many of them have “easy” unions or multiple affairs.
Character C: The weird hair would mark her as an outlander, and she might of course be mistaken for a child from time to time, at a distance, thanks to her stature - - but otherwise the Dales-folk would merely accept her. Nor would her relationship to Character A bother anyone in Shadowdale; the Dales think such matters are a person’s own business, not everyone else’s.
Character D: A pregnant young woman with common sense sounds like many Dale lasses. She’ll fit right in.



So saith Ed, who always likes to see new visitors to the Realms.
love to all,
THO
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 17 Jul 2007 :  03:20:40  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
And a postscript, from both yours truly hooded and from Ed: to
createvmind, Purple Dragon Knight, Pardan, and Rinonalyrna Fathomlin,
you're all very welcome. Glad to be of help or at least entertainment. More Realmslore on the way.
love to all,
THO
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Zandilar
Learned Scribe

Australia
313 Posts

Posted - 17 Jul 2007 :  03:27:02  Show Profile  Visit Zandilar's Homepage Send Zandilar a Private Message
Heya,

quote:
Originally posted by createvmind
And what is the difference between druids performing such rituals as compared to clerics, and any other necessary information you could add that I'm overlooking at the moment?


You're overlooking the fact that the only spell a Druid gets that can return a person to life is Reincarnate. Druids do not have Raise Dead, Resurrection, or True Resurrection on their spell lists.

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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createvmind
Senior Scribe

490 Posts

Posted - 17 Jul 2007 :  21:52:15  Show Profile  Visit createvmind's Homepage Send createvmind a Private Message
Surely you jest Zandilar, I'm aware of the druid rezzing spell which is why I included druids to see what the ritual is for them in Faerun, notice the question was on the ritual not the named spell. I didn't name the specific spell as that wasn't my focus but rather how those capable of such "miracles" are viewed by those who are not druids and clerics.

As a follow-up I also assume there have been exceptions to the "mechanics" in that a cleric not of appropiate level may be given the spell "instantly" by his/her deity or possibly becomes a devout follower to a deity after being blessed with this "power".

I'm sure thats pretty rare, I also assume that just cause a cleric IS OF the appropiate level doesn't automatically mean we can cast such a spell, just my view of such things. I personally don't think clerics who have a soul meld with their deity really want to perform such a ritual more than a handful of times in their entire life.

Edited by - createvmind on 17 Jul 2007 21:53:48
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createvmind
Senior Scribe

490 Posts

Posted - 17 Jul 2007 :  22:02:55  Show Profile  Visit createvmind's Homepage Send createvmind a Private Message
Hello All,

As a add-on to the rezzing question, what happens to a soul that has been raised repeatedly, does spell erase memory of previous death or deaths? Does the mind suffer any adverse affects over time, dreams, visions, nightmares etc...?

Does a soul become easier or harder to recall if person has died more than once and been raised before?

If I raise a person who follows another deity, how will that deity view such a thing if done repeatedly?

At what point will a cleric say, "Perhaps this one should stay dead if he keeps meeting his end over and over, sorry, I will not attempt the ritual, you know,..The Balance and all that."
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Jamallo Kreen
Master of Realmslore

USA
1537 Posts

Posted - 17 Jul 2007 :  22:41:49  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's Homepage Send Jamallo Kreen a Private Message
Well met, all!

I'm presently finishing up Bruce Cordell's Darkvision and was entranced by the use of an Imaskari name for a spell (which wasn't actually cast, so we can only guess what it might have been). Dale Henson long ago provided us with the Netherese names for many spells which they "invented," but as we know, many cultures claim to have "invented" those very same spells. My question is: what (in English translation) would be the Imaskari names of some common spells with which we are all familiar?


I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.


Feed the poor and stroke your ego, too: http://www.freerice.com/index.php.

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Jamallo Kreen
Master of Realmslore

USA
1537 Posts

Posted - 17 Jul 2007 :  22:55:55  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's Homepage Send Jamallo Kreen a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by createvmind

Hello All,

As a add-on to the rezzing question, what happens to a soul that has been raised repeatedly, does spell erase memory of previous death or deaths? Does the mind suffer any adverse affects over time, dreams, visions, nightmares etc...?

Does a soul become easier or harder to recall if person has died more than once and been raised before?

If I raise a person who follows another deity, how will that deity view such a thing if done repeatedly?

At what point will a cleric say, "Perhaps this one should stay dead if he keeps meeting his end over and over, sorry, I will not attempt the ritual, you know,..The Balance and all that."



The Conan RPG has a cool way of dealing with this: the first time a character returns from apparent death, his or her Reputation score goes up quite a bit; subsequent "miraculous" returns from the dead cause the loss of Reputation points, however, because the novelty of the thing quickly wears off.

I say "apparent" death, incidentally, because once you die in the Hyborian Age it takes world-shaking magic to bring you back (along with the sacrifice, perhaps, of several thousand other humans -- not to keep "the Balance and all that," but to appease the depraved, monstrous tastes of whatever benighted entity from the outermost gulphs of space and time trangressed against Nature to return a dead being to life).

If a deity in the Realms was concerned with "the Balance and all that" because a character kept being brought back from the dead, I, as a DM, would have Jergal, or Kelemvor, or whoever is the current holder of the Death portfolio, take the life of someone beloved by (or at least close to) the ever-returning one. Heck of a bummer if bringing your character back to life costs the life of some umpteenth level cleric or wizard ally, especially if it's the person who pays the bills or provides the mojo you need to defeat high-CR monsters ... or perhaps the life of a single innocent child would do.... Hark! Is that the sound of someone's alignment shifting?



I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.


Feed the poor and stroke your ego, too: http://www.freerice.com/index.php.

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Zandilar
Learned Scribe

Australia
313 Posts

Posted - 17 Jul 2007 :  23:25:58  Show Profile  Visit Zandilar's Homepage Send Zandilar a Private Message
Heya,

quote:
Originally posted by createvmind

Surely you jest Zandilar, I'm aware of the druid rezzing spell which is why I included druids to see what the ritual is for them in Faerun, notice the question was on the ritual not the named spell. I didn't name the specific spell as that wasn't my focus but rather how those capable of such "miracles" are viewed by those who are not druids and clerics.


Sorry, it seems like I misread what you wrote. Prior to that point you hadn't made mention of Reincarnate - and while some of the mechanics are the same, Raise Dead (et al) and Reincarnate are two entirely different things, and it would be strange to treat them exactly the same way.

[rant]
On the general issue of bringing PCs back to life after misfortune... Well I have to say, some DMs sound like real sadists. Punishing a player because a dice rolled badly (or, yes, the player was stupid, or the DM underestimated the foes he/she put his/her PCs up against) is not good DM policy in my book (punishing players is not good DM policy at all - yes, their PCs should have to face consequences, but this should not be punishment for the players also... This is supposed to be a game we all play for fun, after all!).

The spells exist, they are hideously expensive (even if they have plenty of gold, they may not be able to find enough diamonds in order to meet the material requirements of the spell, and if it's not a PC cleric casting it, they will owe the temple casting the spell big time, TANSTAAFL and all that), and have a terrible cost associated with them (Reincarnate too - has a level cost and changes the character's form, and may not be a desirable change (ie: elf to bugbear)). PCs are not going to be raised over and over and over again, because eventually they'll be level 1 with 0 Con (ie: dead, and his/her friends so far in debt it wouldn't be funny). The game itself has mechanics built in to restrict the spells. And if your PCs are casting them every single week in your campaign, then there's something wrong with the campaign, not with the spells. (The you in that last sentence is not aimed at anyone in particular.)
[/rant]

Here's a little anecdote... The last time such a spell was cast in a game I played in - the player who's PC was raised (not mine) had made a sequence of bad dice rolls that resulted in his halfling monk's demise. My PC (an elven sorceress) carried his body to her destination - an ancient city of elves, where they had been going to warn them of the rise of a particularly evil (vile) empire, and to ask for their help. The elves did raise Dair (the monk), and it had a profound effect on him. He began to revere the elven deity (Corellon in this case), and it effectively changed his life.

That was the only raise dead type spell that was cast during the game.

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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Penknight
Senior Scribe

USA
536 Posts

Posted - 17 Jul 2007 :  23:35:58  Show Profile Send Penknight a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Jamallo Kreen

Hark! Is that the sound of someone's alignment shifting?
I just had to post when I saw this line because it reminds me of someone I know that plays D&D. They basically feel that just because their alignment shifts, (with something like this), that they can just 'go back' to their old alignment by proper play merely because (in my opinion) they can't roleplay and their character... well, all their characters are the exception to every rule. Even when we play Ravenloft. A true shame, isn't it? Sorry for my stepping in, friends.

Telethian Phoenix
Pathfinder Reference Document

Edited by - Penknight on 17 Jul 2007 23:36:26
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createvmind
Senior Scribe

490 Posts

Posted - 18 Jul 2007 :  00:05:26  Show Profile  Visit createvmind's Homepage Send createvmind a Private Message
Understood and all but I'm really looking for the "experience" of such a thing, as DM I'm wondering what the actual caster will experience so I can apply that flavor to the players if and when they are in such a situation. Really not about the mechanics but how it goes down in the realms.
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 18 Jul 2007 :  02:01:47  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi again, fellow scribes. This time I lay before you Ed’s words of response to createvmind’s query: “What was recently floating through my head was if you could share any info on Crossroads and Guardians if possible, specifically looking if you actually have Crossroads in Reaching Woods or any land region, and are they always above ground?”
Ed replies:



I prefer to keep the precise locations of crossroads and the nature of their guardians as mysterious as possible in print (mainly because doing so really does make them more useful to DMs than otherwise), but let me say this much:
Crossroads are usually (not always) above ground, many of them are now actually OFF the ground (they opened atop mounds or battlements or in rooms that no longer exist, in structures now vanished or fallen into ruin), and yes, there are several in Reaching Woods. Their guardians quite often try to keep unseen, speaking in whispers at a being’s ear only when they believe the being is requesting to use the crossroads or trying to address them. Some guardians employ a floating, flying-about skull, empty helm, or light-mote as the apparent source of their voice, but they are in truth hidden elsewhere, nearby; this ruse is done to prevent hostile spellcasters from successfully destroying, capturing, or magically controlling them.
Aside from a few fictional references (some of them mine) MAGIC OF FAERUN details all we know of this subject in canon printed Realmslore. If you sense NDAs standing menacingly all around me, your senses are working quite well. :}



So saith Ed. Who has used such “hidden ways” thousands of times in our home Realms campaign, down the years, though he never named or described them as MAGIC OF FAERUN does.
love to all,
THO
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createvmind
Senior Scribe

490 Posts

Posted - 18 Jul 2007 :  03:44:56  Show Profile  Visit createvmind's Homepage Send createvmind a Private Message
Thank you Ed,

I kind of figured it was made intentionally vague about the crossroads, I wonder if this question has a simple answer, do the lower lvl illsion spells also change the shadow of the creature under an alternate guise?
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
30338 Posts

Posted - 18 Jul 2007 :  04:01:13  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by createvmind

Hello All,

As a add-on to the rezzing question, what happens to a soul that has been raised repeatedly, does spell erase memory of previous death or deaths? Does the mind suffer any adverse affects over time, dreams, visions, nightmares etc...?


Well, we know that Nain Keenwhistler's hair turned white from all of his trips through the Revolving Pearly Gates (a term that is, I believe, trademarked by Marvel), and he certainly had no wish to add to his standing record of most round-trips to Kelemvor's pantry...

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Hoondatha
Great Reader

USA
2400 Posts

Posted - 18 Jul 2007 :  06:03:04  Show Profile  Visit Hoondatha's Homepage Send Hoondatha a Private Message
Belkram was raised several times before he appeared in Shadows of the Avatar (which, being back in 2e, was an even more momentous occasion) and he didn't seem to be unhinged. Well, he *was* a Harper...

Doggedly converting 3e back to what D&D should be...
Sigh... And now 4e as well.
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createvmind
Senior Scribe

490 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2007 :  01:22:46  Show Profile  Visit createvmind's Homepage Send createvmind a Private Message
Hello All,

I'm on a roll it seems here, I think I have a good idea about this question but decided to post it lest I forget.

How are Half-dragon humanoids affected by the rage if it affects them at all?

One of my PC's is a half-dragon/ half-wood elf, Amethyst if I recall correctly and with 1373 looming I'm wondering how to drop hints without dropping hints. He doesn't read the novels but probably has the Dragons of Faerun scourcebook by now.

MY thoughts are in the early months of rage he will find himself easily distracted, difficuly to awaken at times suffering bouts of deep sleep, annoyed when made to repeat himself or answer constant questions.

If attracted to someone their every action or inaction will change his mood instantly, probably not for the better.

During combat he will find it difficult to restrain himself from doing lethal damage especially to enemy that has hurt him in some form. Will sometimes use natural weapons in a situation that clearly calls for something else before restraining himself, such as against a creature that has resistance/immunity to slashing damage.

Sense of humor will become more jaded.

As the rage persist these "moods" will become more intense, his sleeping pattern will range from occassional deep sleep to very little sleep, or vice versa depending on your take on sleep.

I think him seeing extreme violence, blood and gore will cause him to grow highly agitated if not in combat, more bestial if in combat. And his perception while in combat will suffer as he will focus on slaying and not group tactics, even using his breath weapon with companions/noncombatants in area.

My main point is what will his dreams and daydreams/visions be of and being part elven will that help him in anyway during the various stages of the rage?
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Kuje
Great Reader

USA
7915 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2007 :  01:42:29  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
Richard Byers, before Dragons of Faerun came out, said in his thread so many years ago that the Rage would effect half-dragons but with lesser symptoms. Check his thread or my compiled logs. :)

Also, Dragons of Faerun, in the Dracorage Mythal, backs up what he says because it effects all dragon and dragonblooded.

For some of us, books are as important as almost anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet and excite you... Books are full of the things that you don't get in real life - wonderful, lyrical language, for instance, right off the bat. - Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

My Goodreads page: http://www.goodreads.com/kuje

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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2007 :  03:36:46  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Well met again, fellow Realms fans. This time Ed answers Blueblade, re. this: “Hi, Ed and Lady THO,
ziresta recently asked (among other things) about Lliira worship in Cormyr.
I’d like to ask about the Cormyrean worship of the soundalike goddess, “Leira,” the illusion and deception one, before the Time of Troubles. HOW was she worshipped? I don’t need NPC names or precise temple locations or anything, just some idea of how the faith operated - - and so, what they might have left behind. Thanks!”
Ed replies:



Leira worship still exists, of course (divine spells are still granted, and so some true believers are of the firm opinion that “nothing bad happened” to Leira; her “destruction” was merely her grandest deception yet). Veneration of the Lady of the Mists is secretive and “underground,” being done in private chapels by the nobility and in “upper rooms” in Suzail, Arabel, and Marsember by “private clubs” of cultists who use chambers above unrelated businesses owned by cult members, at night. Aside from the damage any sort of deception can do, they are not necessarily “up to no good.” They merely need to hide and deceive in all things, as an end in itself. See the Fowles novel THE MAGUS or the old TV series THE PRISONER for the “normal” sort of deceit and secrecy among Leirans.
Leirans believe they must personally practice at least one “important” deception (not necessarily something illegal or harmful) per year, so as to always have a large and growing count of personal secrets. As a group, working with other Leirans in a local cult, it is a sin to deceive other “Dedicated” (those who venerate Leira more than any other deity), but the cult must benefit its members (in wealth, rank, influence, and personal achievement) through secret means. This often means smuggling or tax evasion to achieve wealth; giving false testimony or starting spurious rumors or arranging deceptions so as to enhance the reputation of cult members so they are named to higher offices or win stronger reputations; and aiding cult members with alibis, false testimony, and “red herrings” so they escape Crown punishment for mistakes or crimes.
In Cormyr, municipal officials (the clerks and scribes) are riddled with Leirans, but the War Wizards keep their activities small-scale, delighting in deceiving the Leirans as to how much they know about Leiran cult members - - and about the fates of those members they do apprehend (murderers, rapists, and serious traitors to the Crown). For years, Vangey let Leirans get away with small tax evasions, but moved to close loopholes they used after the fact, just to watch how they found and exploited new loopholes (so he could in turn close them, in an ongoing game).
Certain nobles with “grave” secrets to hide often turned to private worship of Leira, and cult members exploited them for funds and aid in deceptions. This ALWAYS attracted War Wizard investigations, but again the War Wizards appeared to “notice nothing,” moving to crush real treason or problems that they “seemed” to discover by other means.
This could well form the basis for a fun little “cloak-and-dagger in the shadows” urban Suzail campaign. I ran one thirteen-episode one at the Brookbanks Library back in 1984, centered on this very matter. The participants were initially disappointed not to have bastard offspring of Azoun in the ranks of PCs (as the previous mini-campaign had done), but ended up enjoying this “Whispers In The Palace” caper far more. Hint: the pillars of any ornate four-poster usually contain a hiding place or three, and such hiding places are always hiding something interesting.



So saith Ed, taking us back (flourish of gently-plucked harpstrings, please) into the past. When I was young and beautiful, and thought underwear should be left behind like calling-cards. Ahem.
love to all,
THO
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Thangorn
Learned Scribe

New Zealand
77 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2007 :  13:15:26  Show Profile  Visit Thangorn's Homepage Send Thangorn a Private Message
Hi there Ed and THO,

I hope today finds you both hearty, healthy and inspired.

I have a couple of quick questions for my Dales campaign concerning river traffic in the dales.
Basically what I'd like to know is are the River Ashaba and its tributaries (Glaemril stream, etc.) used as tradeways for raft/barge traffic? If so to what extent? If not, why not?
Also I'm interested in any lore you can share concerning the Pool of Yeven including what its surroundings might be like and any notable happenings there.

Thanks very much for all the wonderful lore you freely share with us.

Cheers

A Land Far Away (ALFA)
A Forgotten Realms persistent world for Neverwinter Nights 1 & 2
www.alandfaraway.org

Head Builder, DM & FR canon despot ALFA NWN2 Moonsea project.
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Alaundo
Head Moderator
Admin

United Kingdom
5584 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2007 :  16:52:38  Show Profile  Visit Alaundo's Homepage  Click to see Alaundo's MSN Messenger address Send Alaundo a Private Message
Well met, Ed and Lady Hooded One

Aye, 'tis not often I raise my head herein (too many tomes and scrolls to sift through, despite not being able to get a word in edgeways )

Ahem, well onto my purpose. I have a scroll to pass on which was handed to me by Don Lee, for the attention of Ed:

quote:
Dear Ed,

I hope this gets to you; I couldn't find an address so am forwarding it hopefully.

Last year I was stuck in jail for three weeks (long story), and practically the only solace I had was the weekly book cart, which was basically a little cart piled high w/ much-read and collapsing paperbacks of every possible variety. Anyway, I just wanted you to know that of all the stuff I read, frantically, so as not to lose my mind in there, the one book that stuck out was one of your Elminster novels. Better than Stephen King, better--in this case--than the Bible or the annotated DRACULA and, actually, better than the other one really great book I (re)read, Josephine Tey's THE DAUGHTER OF TIME.

Just wanted to tell you.

Alaundo
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 20 Jul 2007 :  02:16:20  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Well met again, all. Alaundo, Ed and I thank you very much for passing on the message from Don Lee, and hope that you can get this response from Ed back to him if he doesn’t read this forum:



Thank you very much, Don, for letting me know how much you enjoyed the Elminster novel, when you very much needed “good reads.” I’m glad I was able to be of help, and I thank you very much for telling me how much you liked the book.
I write them for folks to enjoy, and very much appreciate it when someone tells me they did. That means a lot to me.
Money from the publisher or not, there’s something soul destroying about putting books out into the Great Silence and hearing nothing back. So when you tell me you really liked it, I perk up and really smile for a day or so. And when you prefer it to Tey's THE DAUGHTER OF TIME, I am awed and humbled. Thank you!



So saith Ed. Who really is, and is doing the happy dance right now. And promising a “longish” Realmslore answer next time, too.
love to all,
THO
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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2007 :  00:57:46  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
. . . . And now, by'Jove, it IS "next time."
Hello again, fellow scribes. This time Ed responds to Kuje about this recent query: “Hiya Ed,
I was browsing through your replies from this year and I was wondering if you could expand on your mention of finishing schools that are in some of the large cities. You specifically mentioned Waterdeep and Silverymoon, mostly in the reply from Jan of this year.
So could you note a few more details about the schools and maybe those in a few other cities? I know, this might turn into a large topic but I was curious about those places and so I was seeking more lore.”
Ed replies:



It certainly could turn into a huge topic, and I have no intention of providing a long list of academies. (Why? No time, and much of this works best if a DM can create just what they need to best suit their own campaign, with PCs having to discover all they can about a given academy through roleplaying.)
However, here are the basics (add this to what I replied back in January, which appears on page 8 of this thread): glib individuals who are literate (in particular down-on-their-luck longtime professional servants or minor nobles; what Waterdhavian society calls the “fifth, sixth, and seventh sisters” or “idle aunts” and “idle old uncles”) or have a particular skill (with a musical instrument, or as a singer, or fencing) set themselves up, usually in upper rooms somewhere (in Waterdeep, mainly in Castle Ward or South Ward; in Silverymoon, mainly in the westernmost streets of the city), to teach or provide practice sessions in return for pay. There are inevitably some “mock” academies that are really houses of prostitution or private drinking clubs for young wastrel nobles (and usually last until uncovered in public scandals), but most of these institutions are quite real and never rise above the level of struggling tutors.
A few, however, have the resources or charismatic staff or connections to establish themselves as “refined.” The reason there are so many of them in Waterdeep and Silverymoon is because both of those cities have some social mobility within classes (i.e. money can buy you status), and an ambitious, rising upper-middle-class that wants to aspire to nobility or at least the trappings of nobility. These are the groups that enrich academies that can establish an exclusive reputation, so that they expand, gain luxurious appointments (beautiful buildings), and can therefore hold revels or recitals or demonstrations to attract social interest and more clients (allowing them to hire more staff, purchase properties to gain rental income and therefore cash flow, expand again, and so on).
Wealthy or noble patrons sometimes sponsor (give some money to, not own outright or bankroll all the costs of) existing academies, and in return use them (on rare occasions) as private armies or agents (spy on this rival for me, rough up that man as he leaves yonder tavern, buy up all the barley you can find on the morrow).
However, the vast majority of academies are comfortable little establishments, such as three widows sharing a house and instructing young ladies on sewing, good manners, and how to act as a hostess (serving wine, directing servants at table, and the art of small talk). They will have a doorguard, one or more maids, and a regular clientele (akin to a modern real-world medical dentist).
Here are just a few academies (by no means all of them, in any city mentioned), to start you off:
WATERDEEP:
• Mother Tamra’s House of Graces (clientele: young ladies of ambitious families, being taught how to wash and groom themselves, fashion sense and how to keep a wardrobe looking fresh [including washing and sewing for repairs], etiquette and carriage [how to walk, sit, and hold one’s hands], how to write polite messages, how to politely and with dignity encourage or discourage social entreaties, dancing, and the “right thing to say” in difficult situations; secret clientele: prostitutes or male crossdressers or nobles about to appear in drag at a revel, who desire to learn how to look and act like a young lady of quality): Mendever Street, Castle Ward
• Tartel’s House of the Sword (clientele: persons desiring to learn how to fence or defend themselves with or against a light longsword or smaller blade, and a dagger; secret clientele: young nobles desiring to learn how to duel, and to meet young ladies for sex [Tartel is a wencher, and encourages young and beautiful women of all sorts as clients by offering them half-rates; prostitutes are allowed to pretend to be either students or maids on staff by paying full student rates; the rest of their “takings” are theirs to keep]): Seawatch Street, Sea Ward
• Corondorr’s Countinghouse (clientele: young guild members and unguilded shopkeepers desiring to learn math skills and “how business is really practiced” from a cynical, veteran clerk-of-coin retired from Piergeiron’s Palace; secret clientele: swindlers who want to learn all about dodges and what clerks like the sarcastic old Corondorr are looking out for, when business is done in Waterdeep): Aveen Street, North Ward
SILVERYMOON:
• Tantathra’s (clientele: folk who want to learn to sing or play simple airs on stringed instruments, or at least learn lyrics to popular songs; not-so-secret clientele: amateur musicians, folk looking to recruit amateur musicians for a revel, feast, or other entertainment event [e.g. shop opening, celebration], folk who love a regular musical get-together; secret clientele: romantic folk looking for lovers): Stormwind Alley (sideline: Tantathra sells teas, wine, ale, replacement strings, lyric sheets, and instruments to clients)
• The Risen Moon Academy (clientele: folk who want to learn how to dance and fence; secret clientele: persons desiring to pay for massages or outright lovemaking from several of the more beautiful female instructors employed by the proprietress, a beautiful, one-eyed retired adventuress by the name of Amratha “Redtresses” Dalree) : Alander’s Lane
NEVERWINTER:
• The Starshine Academy (clientele: those who desire to appreciate [and paint their own] art, acquire herblore, be able to live off the land, and know wild animals by scent, sound, and spoor; secret clientele: those desiring to make potions that induce sleep, freedom from pain, heightened sensations, lust, and calm): Blackule Lane (sideline: the tutors sell paintings, herbs, recipes, “animal tracks” reference drawings, and potions [some, it is rumored, even vend poisons])
SUZAIL:
• Mathulk’s House (clientele: males from all walks of life, both masters and servants, desiring to learn how to dress, maintain a wardrobe, walk and dance with dignity, and the “proper things to say and do” in most social situations; secret clientele: women wanting to pretend to be a man for a fancy-dress revel, or women needing to fool others into thinking them male for more serious purposes [includes tactics and special garments to hide the female figure and disguise feminine movements and gestures]): Taumurt’s Lane
• Dhannaera’s School of Deportment And Sophistication (clientele: females from all walks of life desiring to learn how to wash and groom themselves and others, fashion sense and how to keep a wardrobe looking fresh [including washing and sewing for repairs], etiquette and carriage [how to walk, sit, and dance], and the “right thing to say” in difficult situations; secret clientele: prostitutes and servants desiring to “move up” to higher-class employers): Nethnell Alley (sideline: sharp-tongued Dhannaera makes and sells corsets and bust augmentations, teaches the arts of sexual pleasure to a select and discreet few, and hires herself out as an escort specializing in sexually pleasuring awkward and “green” young noblemen and sons of wealthy wannabe-nobles [for their “first time” or even to tutor them to appear experienced, when their parents want this training and are paying for it)

ATHKATLA:
• Rezunder’s Academy of the Coin (clientele: investors, speculators, and shopkeepers interested in learning Amn’s ways of doing business, how to make and maintain a reputation in trade, “good bets” for investing, and financial foes and pitfalls to watch for): Methquem’s Way



So saith Ed. Who has used dozens of these establishments in Realmsplay with us, down the years. To Torm, these became notorious (“Aha! Another QUIET LITTLE ACADEMY, nudge nudge wink wink”) as places of vice, prostitution, thieving guild fronts, and hidden cults specializing in devouring live chickens or coupling with snakes, or bathing in chocolate [all as part of worship]; Torm termed them “nutbrain cults,” and several times got in trouble by using that phrase when talking to local Watch officers or magisters or tavernmasters. But then, the terms “trouble” and “Torm” are rarely separated by much more than the width of his tongue.
love to all,
THO
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Kuje
Great Reader

USA
7915 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2007 :  01:44:45  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
Cool, thanks Ed.

For some of us, books are as important as almost anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet and excite you... Books are full of the things that you don't get in real life - wonderful, lyrical language, for instance, right off the bat. - Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

My Goodreads page: http://www.goodreads.com/kuje

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The Sage
Procrastinator Most High
Moderator

Australia
31690 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2007 :  03:15:19  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
Greetings Ed, I've another question to add to my backlog.

*THO adds it to the pile*

It's regarding artistic traditions. I'm currently reading through a particularly lengthy tome covering the history of the Dada and Surrealism movements of the early 20th century. And, given my love of all-things-music related in the Realms, I started thinking about what type of artistic styles are at play in the Realms and how they may have influenced its society -- like music, for example.

In '04, '05 and '06, you've briefly told us a little about aspects of Realms art concerning sculpture and styles, and certain artisitic techniques, like perspective, that have been used for some works of art seen across the Realms. However, I'm wondering, chiefly, what more you can tell us about some of the more specific artistic traditions that have been both popular in the past, and those that form the current artistic trends among enterprising bards, bold Lliirans, and other artists throughout Faerûn today? And, also, perhaps a little about how these traditions may have influenced other aspects of Realms society -- like music, architecture, fashion, and, perhaps, even political thinking -- particularly in areas/cities where these traditions are strongest [for example, how Surrealism became popular in New York society after the Second World War]?

I realise that this is a fairly extensive topic. So I'll leave it up to you with regard to what you want to cover and what may be too lengthy to discuss properly, here at Candlekeep.

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Jamallo Kreen
Master of Realmslore

USA
1537 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2007 :  18:37:44  Show Profile  Visit Jamallo Kreen's Homepage Send Jamallo Kreen a Private Message
Well met!

In two recent Realms novels (City of Splendors and Darkvision) we've seen how, in the 1370s at least, some people will go to almost any length to "improve" their bodies with "add-ons" or replacement parts. How common is this practice (at least among those who can afford it)?

I have a specific question regarding a possible Bodywarper modification on which I would like your opinion, too: if the ancestral memory portion of an aboleth's brain were to be reduced to its minimum size and implanted into a subject, do you think that the subject would acquire the aboleth's ancestral memories since the acquiring and passing on of these memories seems to be merely extraordinary (and "natural" biology for aboleths, aberrations though they be)? I would suppose that the changes to the recipient's INT and WIS would vary according to the individual, but I am interested in what you think of the likelihood of the graft passing on aboleth lineage memory.

Many thanks to you both for all of these wonderful answers over the past few years!


I have a mouth, but I am in a library and must not scream.


Feed the poor and stroke your ego, too: http://www.freerice.com/index.php.

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The Hooded One
Lady Herald of Realmslore

5043 Posts

Posted - 22 Jul 2007 :  15:54:40  Show Profile  Visit The Hooded One's Homepage Send The Hooded One a Private Message
Hi again, fellow scribes. Hmmm, great questions coming in.
Ed fields another question from createvmind this time, to whit: “This time I wish to understand Intelligent weapons in Faerun, how are they given sentience, do living beings voluntarily meld with weapons? Can they be bonded with weapons against their will and more importantly can a possessor fiend enter a intelligent weapon and what happens when this occurs, who dominates who, is it a constant conflict between the two "entities" within the weapon and how does this affect unknowing wielder? Thanks for all the insight.”
Ed replies:



Whew. Quite a barrage, there. Where to begin? Well, you’ll see one example of a sentient sword in the last book of the Knights of Myth Drannor trilogy, next year: THE SWORD NEVER SLEEPS.
Intelligent weapons are given sentience in many ways. Sometimes the souls or spirits of dying folk drift into waiting enchanted weapons, sometimes they are put there to keep the person’s sentience alive, and in some cases wizards and sorcerers who desire to live “forever” put themselves into weapons of their own enchanting, as an alternative to lichdom.
Sometimes grieving, sick, disfigured, disabled, fugitive, or just unhappy persons willingly cooperate with a wizard or other spellcaster (such as a priest of Gond) who can “put them into” a weapon; in other words, they DO “voluntarily meld” with a weapon.
However, being in a blade or other intelligent weapon drives most minds mad, over sufficient time (if bored, not if active).
Yes, most intelligent weapons can be bound against their will - - by the very few beings who know how and have sufficient power. A possessor fiend can in some cases enter an intelligent weapon, but usually can’t - - and upon entry, the sentiences may argue and even battle for control, but the resident entity has all the advantages in this struggle, and usually easily prevails, reducing the “second one in” to merely a mocking, powerless commentator.
Sometimes the wielder of the weapon is unaware of this struggle, but usually they can at least tell that something is wrong - - and if the weapon can speak, they almost always become aware of the struggle. A sentience in a weapon that’s having to fight one or more other internal sentiences for control usually lacks (or loses) power and concentration enough to “control” a wielder (any external being that touches the weapon). That doesn’t mean they won’t try to influence (by speech or actions) or affect the fates (by actions) of such wielders, telling the wielder what to do or uttering cryptic warnings or suddenly attacking others or springing from the wielder’s hand in attempts to affect how the wielder is regarded by other beings (“He tried to sword the Princess! KILL him!”).
Geniuses (beholders and the like, and the sort of archwizard of towering will who can readily become a lich, clinging to concentration and intent even through the bodily agony of killing themselves in particular, precise ways) can often manage to quell other wills inside a weapon AND dominate or control the weapon’s wielder, but such sentiences are rare - - and it’s even rarer that they wind up inside a weapon (when they do, it’s often the sort of sentience that can enter and leave the weapon freely, not one “bound” or trapped in the weapon, and so use the weapon as a means of hiding from peril or surviving for long periods until they can find another living body to possess, and thus outlive mortal causes or normal lifespans).



So saith Ed, who has always played with such weapons in his fiction and in Realmsplay. As I know, to my character’s cost (Ed can vividly describe what it feels to have a long, hard, COLD longsword slid fatally up inside your body - - so vividly that I was almost sick, the first time he did so during play). Shudder.
love to all,
THO
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