Dunstrand Rising - The Beginning
Taqwill mar Fyrmin
Academic magus searching for his path
CURRENT EVENTS Month 10, 9163
Taqwill mar Fyrmin has been the custodian and guardian of a set of terrible and powerful secrets and knowledge for almost 3 generations at the Library at Braddon Bog. He has had the fortune (some may say misfortune) of having the trust of a band of heroes who, though names change, has remained true to each other for a long time.
The secret of the ancient church of Malek upon which the church of Aerna was raised and which eventually became a somewhat renowned library and museum has been Taqwill’s to keep… along with the legacy of said heroes. Their offspring, or at least of three of them, it is his fortune to know as well – though he believes they are woefully unworthy of their father’s name in all cases. He never expected the fates to come meddling with such perseverance as in those times of yore, but they have and his life has been tumultuous to say the least. Now he seeks to provide his services and his approach as a seeker of knowledge and a way to making their pay in a slow and steady fashion as opposed to the normal adventurer’s life. Geraldine had one of the sharpest intellects Taqwill has ever seen – even amongst the elves, her reasoning ability would stand out against elders ten time her age. Taqwill has put forward his services as a researcher… and Gide – the leader of the Gallants, seems to appreciate a seeker for knowledge more than most ‘mercenary’ leaders of his type – earning him some measure in Taqwill’s eyes.
Now that the original Gallants have passed away, he intends to see the new ones on a more focused path for good and something that Sandovhal and the original Band of Crows would have been proud of. To this end, he has made sure to have a voice in that and has given over his apprentice – Sustreynus Gim – a halfling from Loamwold – as part of the re-fromed Gallants under Baron Robert Wheglin of Osmail Mark.
Taqwill grew up with his uncle Grynathean Mar Adeuss and mother Tilchia. His father (Fyrmin) was old when he was born and died while he was still very young. Tichin, his sister, was older and left to serve as a Tree Whisperer in the lands bordering the Vale Kiranym 30 years before he was born. His uncle was an adventurer who had retired and served as an emissary between the lands of mankind and those of the Elves of Ynth. He spent half his time in the great library at Port Town, along the Beyne river in the North Merchant Cities. His primary job was fact checking human history against the annals and memories of Ynth. Port Towne and the community of scholars, scribes, sages and mages were one of the few places that his race mattered little – though his trips home on missions of knowledge-seeking often exposed him to the uglier side of humans and their prejudices. He spent years all total on two different occasions as captive of the elves of the Pale Plains, learning of their culture and ways as well. During his time in Ynth, he would train his nephew in the ways of a generalist magus – as he had to learn in difficulty when he left home.
For 60 years he was trained thus – each half year learning more and practicing for the next half year, awaiting the return of his mentor. One year, while traveling through Umbak with an escort his party was attacked and killed. The authorities said that it was nothing more than a burglary gone wrong, but many questions remained and no witnesses were ever found. Taqwill’s mother was going to send him to the eastern edges of Ynth as a translator along the lands of the half-breeds, but Taqwill wanted nothing to do with the safe and secluded forests of Ynth. His uncle had spun so many tales of the spaces and places of the realms, that he left home and followed the route his uncle had – taking his clothes, spell books and his credentials and leaving under the light of the moon. Posing as his uncle, he gained entry to the Deulce library at Port Towne where his disguise was unraveled. However, the scholars saw the need for the same role, and soon it was agreed he would take his uncle’s place. For 20 years he spent traveling between Ynth and the north, staying only on a single route and eschewing safety over adventure. One day though, the peace of his study and life were shattered when his long time friend Liam Ruke asked him to help transcribe, rebind, and catalog a library that had been shipped from the Duchy of Dunstrand. The library was ancient, old from a time when the duchy was young – almost to its founding. Liam was excited, a find like this came along only once in a life time and he believed that they could make their scholarly names widely recognized by working on this project. There were annals of history, personal journals, reference works, works of religious merit and even a collection of magus books and references – all written in old dialects and with obscure local and historical context. Taqwill’s talents and cross referencing ability with the histories of Ynth would be invaluable in assessing the veracity and creating a reference crib for the works. There was also a set of tomes sacred to the god Malek, cataloging unspeakable acts of self inflicted pain, of depraved sacrifice to the god and of the merits and woes of those who had stripped their soul bare and could no longer be deceived. So horrible were this set of materials, that it gave Taqwill nightmares for weeks and neither of them could finish the collection. Buried deep within the scrolls and tomes too was a set of spells and a cipher to reconstruct their workings.
When the time came to return the cataloged work to the owner, Sandovhal Aelishan, of Dunstrand, he chose to personally deliver the books. He wanted to pursue the spell knowledge he had found and felt he needed the owners permission and more time to study the spells to ensure his initial transcriptions were correct. The politics and wars of the humans had just begun to spark deep into the north. He feared that because the ‘Hero of the North’ had some relationship (so he was told by his friends in the library) with the book’s owners, he had best travel in secret. At first the larger cities gave way to towns and finally to the lowlands of county Bar-Innis – a cold, wet place. He traveled with a cart the entire way, alone wit the books and his gear. His hopes that this may be his chance to finally break free of his past and make his own way seemed to be fading as he traveled to more remote and obscure settlements. At last he arrived, just after what appeared to be a major military engagement locally. There was something odd about the ancient church that he delivered the books to – the flow of mana around it was very disturbed, and many unknown effects channeled through and around it – there was much not right about it.
He met the man named Sandovhal, who took receipt of his books and invited Taqwill in for a meal. Over the meal they shared their love of books and Taqwill felt at home, for the human seemed to show no anger or prejudice towards the faerie blood of Taqwill. At last Taqwill told him of the spells ciphered in the tomes. Sandovhal grew very interested and asked what else may be ciphered in amongst the works. They talked all evening and through the morning until exhaustion carried them to sleep. Those around them let them converse in private, but upon waking and preparing the cart for the journey back, Taqwill finally asked if he may stay. He claims to have stayed aloof of recent years events, focused only on his job, but that his uncle had once said that in order to really understand humans and their history, he must walk amongst them… and Taqwill believes this is his opportunity to be part of human history and to understand things better. Sandovhal agreed to take him before the rest of his companions and decide…