Devestior and Spike

You say, "Thank you all for coming. Now, before we begin, please put away your swords and shields if you're inclined to...Sit if you're going to sit....ask your familiars to go to sleep... and please settle down."

You say, "The regulars here know that I don't like to hush the room, but we've a good size crowd here tonight, so it will require your cooperation not to. Please keep all movements to a minimum."

You say, "If it does get too noisy here, I will keep the room hushed...but, I've not had to do that in a long time."

Setzier clears his throat.

You say, "Okay, now that everyone is settled down...."

You say, "Tonight we have two spearks...or tale tellers. But they aren't really tales, they are part of our history..."

You say, "and part of current events in these lands."

You say, "Tonight Lord Setzier will tell us of the Mysterious Lord Devestior, followed by Lady Seckara and the history of Spike the War Rat."

You say, "We'll learn of the connections between these two well known figures."

You say, "At this time, let me introduce Lord Setzier."

Setzier grins.

You smile at Setzier.

(Setzier steps forward, glancing out over the crowd.)

Setzier says, "Good'evening, I am as you probably have guessed by now, Setzier Von Evenlore. I have come here to tell you the story of Devestior Baron of Breganda, Glotach the Wyvern, the wizards both white and black, and the keys of the mysterious box."

Prata grins.

Tilarium blinks.

Setzier says, "First and for most, an apology to begin. If at any time during my story my form flickers out of your view, bare with me I'll return. Research of late has... been interesting."

Setzier winks.

Seckara begins chuckling at Setzier.

Breron chuckles.

Kerl grins.

Setzier asks, "Shall the story begin... Who where has heard of Devestior? Raise your hands?"

(lots of raised hands)

(Setzier nods to himself and says, "Ah... quite a bit of you...")

Setzier says, "My story begins, as told by Devestior himself, his own history..."

Setzier just opened a dark stained leather tome embossed with a symbol of Fash'lo'nae.

Setzier turns a page of his stained leather tome.

Setzier says, "Long ago... Far longer then this fair city was around..."

Setzier says, "Devestior lived in a land called Breganda.."

Setzier says, "He was a boy but then.. With his father the king of the lands."

Setzier says, "Magics there are not like they are here..."

Setzier says, "Bregandans know many circles of magic, and summoning wyverns was one of Devestior's favorite pastimes."

Setzier says, "There were many wizards in the lands, but the most common they called by black and white wizards."

Setzier says, "One, his name Devestior shant not mention.. Ruled above the black and sinister wizards."

Setzier says, "Vial and a crazed man he was..."

Setzier smiles quietly to himself.

Setzier turns a page of his stained leather tome.

Setzier says, "Out in the woods, Devestior had summoned a pack of wyverns... five to be exact."

Setzier says, "The most he had ever summoned at the time... and he did admit it was not easy to control them."

Setzier says, "Sadly... one had gotten away."

Setzier emphatically pokes a finger at a page of his stained leather tome.

(Setzier nods to himself.)

Setzier says, "Devestior searched long and hard for it, but time found nothing..."

Setzier says, "A wild wyvern near town is not a pretty sight...."

Setzier clears his throat.

Setzier says, "Devestior had kept a wyvern in the hills of the mountain in which he rode all the time..."

Setzier says, "He found his most trusted pet... and went in search of the mountains over the sea..."

Setzier says, "There... He found a sight that he thought he would never see in his life."

Setzier exclaims, "Circling atop the mountain was the wyvern he had lost!"

(Setzier points behind you!)

Setzier clears his throat.

Myshel gasps.

Arianiss raises an eyebrow.

Setzier turns a page of his stained leather tome.

Brighde blinks.

Rentis squints.

Lynda's face turns slightly pale.

Aspethisis screams!

Vorrador cowers.

Aszel rubs Myshel gently.

Setzier says, "The wyvern was... surprising him more... attacking two men."

Setzier exclaims, "A great battle was going on! He posed himself a question as what to do!"

Xeriz leans forward.

(Setzier glances over the crowd for a moment.. as if trying to get you to answer, but goes on.)

Setzier says, "A black and sinister man was controlling the wyvern to attack and kill the other."

Forlarg shudders.

Setzier says, "He could not let this creature take another mans life. So he killed it."

(Setzier runs his finger across his throat.)

Amerlise gulps.

Setzier says, "And the man that was controlling it."

Myshel shivers.

Setzier smiles quietly to himself.

Setzier says, "All he could say as words of wisdom..."

Setzier says, "Always think about the situation before you attack..."

Setzier says, "The man he slew.."

Setzier says, "Was his father."

A pained expression crosses Seckara's face.

A pained expression crosses Meguas's face.

Seckara's face turns slightly pale.

Setzier turns a page of his stained leather tome.

Sevyd blinks.

Dreamwever gasps.

Octavia swoons.

Prata sighs.

Amerlise's jaw drops.

Eratika wrinkles her nose.

Dellenne's jaw drops.

Brighde shakes her head.

Absinia sighs.

Forlarg says, "So he killed his father.."

Myshel sighs softly.

Forlarg shivers.

Setzier says, "It was his very own assassin blade in which he ended his father's life..."

Setzier nods to Forlarg.

Kerl's face turns slightly pale.

Setzier says, "The man his father was fighting was a white wizard."

Setzier says, "His father was not evil, mind you."

Brookwyn blinks.

Setzier says, "Devestior found out later, that he was plotting to kill the white wizards by looking like he was its enemy."

Setzier says, "Distrought, Devestior could not return home.."

Prata blinks.

Setzier says, "So he left."

Setzier says, "In coming to these very lands... our Elanith, Devestior thought he was safe."

Setzier says, "However..."

Setzier says, "Not so."

Setzier turns a page of his stained leather tome.

Octavia asks, "who was plotting? Devestior or his father?"

Octavia peers quizzically at Setzier.

Setzier says, "Father"

Setzier nods to Octavia.

Forlarg asks, "Why was his father plottin' against the white wizards?"

Forlarg rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Arianiss touches one finger to his lips.

Forlarg smiles.

You say, "We'll have time for Q&A when he is done with the tale."

(Setzier squints at the page.)

Setzier says, "Sorry... smudged"

Setzier emphatically pokes a finger at a page of his stained leather tome.

Setzier clears his throat.

Setzier asks, "Where was I?"

Setzier says, "Ah yes."

Setzier says, "The wizards knew that Devestior now knew who their leader was, if that was him."

Setzier says, "Devestior found out, because of what he knew..."

Setzier says, "They would bring together their most sacred and vile army against him."

Setzier says, "For slaying who he slew.. was not an easy task."

Prata works his fingers under his spidersilk headcloth and scratches his head.

Setzier says, "And with that... I come to the next portion of our story..."

Setzier flips through the pages of his stained leather tome.

Setzier asks, "Any question on Devestior's History?"

Setzier says, "raise your hand."

Arianiss raises his hand.

Brynnah raises her hand.

Nanna raises her hand.

Setzier leans on Arianiss.

Setzier peers quizzically at Arianiss.

Arianiss asks, "His father was a black wizard, plotting to kill the white wizards, and the white wizards are upset with Devestior?"

Setzier says, "Basically. Devestior's Father were trying to kill the white wizards by pretending to be their enemy.."

Ariyel raises an eyebrow.

Eratika raises her hand.

Amerlise furrows her brow.

Esserae gulps.

Arianiss asks, "Why was he, erm, pretending if he already was?"

Tilarium says, "if he was trying ta kill them he didn't have ta pretend ta be the enemy cause he was"

You say, "You mean a known enemy? Obviously he was their enemy."

Setzier rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Brookwyn says, "I am sooo confused..."

Brookwyn blushes a nice shade of off-pink.

Esserae nods to Brookwyn.

Kerl grins.

Esserae rubs Brookwyn gently.

Nanna begins chuckling at Brookwyn.

Setzier says, "Devestior was the king mind you, he wouldn't do what he did out in the open, ths they did not know who he was."

Setzier coughs.

Setzier says, "Er Devestior's father."

Setzier nods to Amerlise.

Amerlise says, "Ah."

Seckara nods to Setzier.

You ask, "Trying to lay blame on someone else?"

Setzier says, "Devestior's fater, was not a black wizard, to my knowledge, only pretending to be one to kill the white wizards."

Setzier nods to you.

Setzier says, "To start a war, perhaps."

Setzier grins.

Eratika says, "ah."

Tilarium nods.

Neyana sits down.

Nanna furrows her brow.

Arianiss nods.

Amerlise says, "So that the vengeance of the white wizards would fall on the black, and not the kingdom."

Forlarg says, "Ahh it's starting to make a little more sense.."

You say, "That makes sense then."

Seckara nods to Amerlise.

Setzier nods to Amerlise.

(Eratika bends down and scratches her leg, which is covered with coarse sandy blond hair. You hear "sss" "sss" "sss" as Eratika's dirty fingernails rake over her leg hairs.)

Prata frowns.

Nouveux nods.

Arianiss asks, "And so both the black and white wizards are upset that Devestior killed their king?"

Setzier says, "Because Devestior seen their leader.."

Setzier says, "The white wizard's leader."

Arianiss nods.

Setzier asks, "Anything else?"

Setzier peers quizzically at Arianiss.

Nanna raises her hand.

Forlarg asks, "But didn't he save the white wizard's leader life by killin' his father?"

Arianiss says, "It might be answered later."

Arianiss grins.

Setzier says, "In a sense, he did"

Setzier nods to Forlarg.

Setzier points at Brynnah.

Brynnah says, "I hope I did not overlook the answer"

Brynnah smiles at Setzier.

Setzier grins.

Brynnah asks, "But, I have always wondered where Breganda was?"

Brynnah blushes a nice shade of off-pink.

Setzier says, "Breganda is far away, no Elanthian can pass its portal to there. Only Bregandans can cross..."

Brynnah says, "Do not know if I am overlooking the obvious--or, if it is a mystery to all of us"

Brynnah nods to Setzier.

Seckara nods to Setzier.

Brynnah says, "Thank you"

Setzier asks, "Anything else?"

Setzier leans on Brynnah.

Nanna raises her hand.

Forlarg raises his hand.

Setzier squints at Brynnah.

Shallowgrave suddenly fades into view.

Brynnah says, "That was all I had to ask"

Brynnah smiles at Setzier.

Setzier nods.

Rentis glances at Shallowgrave.

Setzier points at Nanna.

Ariyel clears her throat.

Ariyel glances at you.

(Setzier glances out the corner of his eye at Shallowgrave.)

Rentis tightens his grip on his orange toy rat and glances over at Shallowgrave.

Emeraldwand grins.

Nouveux nods to Feindre.

Silvertre stands up.

Absinia leans on Rentis.

(Seckara looks up at Setzier, apparently oblivious to Shallowgrave's presence.)

Seckirotad leans back.

Ariyel says, "I believe that elf has.. arrived"

Rentis scowls at Shallowgrave.

Seckara glances at Ariyel.

Seckara blinks.

Nanna asks, "Do you know how it was that Devestior arrived in our lands as an assassin, in the employ of someone? a prince or something? And how it was he decided no longer to become an assassin? because of his falling in love with someone? Shy..?someone?"

Rentis glances at Shallowgrave.

Ariyel smiles ever so helpfully.

Seckara removes a coal black eonake waraxe from in her rat pelt ankle sheath.

You glance at Shallowgrave.

Seckara tightens her grip on her black eonake waraxe and glances over at Shallowgrave.

Neyana sighs.

Neyana smiles.

Rentis tightens his grip on his orange toy rat and glances over at Shallowgrave.

Setzier says, "Devestior first came to these lands, to get away.. He couldn't returned. Probably, to my knowledge, Devestior felt being an assassin is the only thing he could do, because he did kill his own father."

(Seckara glances at Arwen and mouths, "Could a guard stand between us?")

Nanna furrows her brow.

Kerl moves to stand in front of Seckara.

You nod to Kerl.

Setzier says, "He most likely didn't come here thinking of being an assassin... it just probably occured naturally."

Ughsplat moves to stand in front of Seckara.

Rentis scoots over in front of Seckara.

Kerl shifts his weight.

Seckara smiles gratefully at Kerl, and looks noticably relieved.

Seckara put a coal black eonake waraxe in her rat pelt ankle sheath.

Nanna says, "I guess I should ask to hear the tale from him the next time I see him"

Nanna chuckles.

Seckirotad scoots over in front of Seckara.

Setzier says, "And because of the violently political nature of Breganda, he was already trained as such to some extent."

Nanna asks, "Well, the first time he was the the lands he killed some warrior right? In the gy? For basically no reason?"

Shallowgrave narrows his eyes.

Setzier rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Amerlise says, "Reasons unknown to us don't necessarily constitute a lack of reason."

Setzier nods to Amerlise.

Nanna says, "well, he never gave one"

Setzier says, "First time he arrived he came to assassinate Noonga, and some Sorcerer... the first time I've heard of him."

Shallowgrave slings a giant rat crested rathide shield over his shoulder.

Seckara nods to Setzier.

Nanna says, "Even now when he's supposedly good, at least none that I have heard"

Nanna nods to Setzier.

Nanna says, "yes, them"

Nanna asks, "why?"

Setzier says, "I don't know the details as to why... I wasn't in this town when it happened."

Setzier grins.

Nanna nods.

Nanna shrugs.

Nanna says, "ok, thanks"

Setzier says, "Though rumours say he was hired supposedly by another Baron of Breganda."

Nanna nods to Setzier.

Tilarium shivers.

Setzier asks, "Anything else, wizardess?"

Setzier leans on Nanna.

Shallowgrave removes a netted pole from in his brown canvas jacket.

Nanna says, "I wonder if that was this Traleon"

Shallowgrave leans on his pole.

Harlock just went up.

Nanna says, "that he's gone back to aid"

Seckara glances at Shallowgrave.

Seckara narrows her eyes.

Ariyel coughs.

Nanna says, "nope, thanks ;)"

Setzier says, "Alright, I'll do more questions after, I apologise for getting the last two who didn't get answered."

Forlarg asks, "I gots a question 'bout them wizards...If he saved the white wizards leader from death..why are the white wizards mad at him..I don't understand. They just strange folk out there in Bregandans or somethin'? Shouldn't they be thankful for that?"

Forlarg smiles ponderin' in his mind..

Setzier says, "They're mad at Devestior because they know who their leader is... a prime information that was needed, no one knew who he was."

(Setzier opens his book book and says, "I'll do questions after this part of story.")

Setzier grins.

Setzier says, "Lets see..."

Setzier flips through the pages of his stained leather tome.

Setzier says, "Ah... the keys and the box, along with Glotach."

Setzier grins.

Tilarium shivers.

Xeriz leans forward.

Setzier says, "Long ago, something happened on Teras, that some may know of, some may not..."

Setzier says, "A box, with various key holes was droped from the grey wyvern... Named Glotach"

Setzier says, "4 keys, were scattered among the breeze..."

Setzier says, "Red, black, purple and green, they were."

Setzier says, "This was long long ago, but recent in some eyes.. as well as Devestior's."

(Tilarium shivers as a cold chill runs down his back)

Kerl nods to Setzier.

Nouveux leans forward.

Setzier says, "Within this box was a very powerful item.."

Nouveux exclaims, " what was it! what was it!"

Nouveux blushes a nice shade of off-pink.

Setzier says, "The box was smashed and its item within lost till just recently. Devestior found this item of power, and would not tell of it, but said we would soon know."

Setzier says, "What Devestior needs, is the four keys, or who owns them...There is one key, a master key. A golden key which he holds."

Setzier says, "Much to his suprise, the keys are needed to be used on the item within also."

Setzier says, "When he found the keys, he will summon everyone together for the final opening of the long lost item of Teras."

Setzier turns a page of his stained leather tome.

Setzier says, "The wizards were near, when Devestior spoke of this and said a great warning.."

Setzier says, "Think not twice about killing the white and black wizards... The white wizards old beacons within their clothing, and will alert their friends."

Setzier says, "I've been told, a long ago... Devestior began showing up more, hanging around with Blades and Tritan at the time causing trouble on Teras."

Setzier says, "The keys began showing up on the isle in various place, All glowing, one green,blue,black and red i believe...and Devestior wearing the final key around his neck the golden key."

Setzier says, "The box was also found by Featherhair if my information is right. Devestior convinced her to let him have the box, and the holders of the keys to use them to open."

Rayyne says, "I don't think that is correct, Setzier."

Rayyne asks, "Mind if I insert a tad here?"

Setzier nods to Rayyne.

Setzier says, "Go ahead."

Rayyne says, "I am sorry, I should not have been so forward."

Rayyne says, "My apologies, Setzier."

Setzier says, "Its alright, my information is sketchy, go ahead."

Setzier just nudged Rayyne.

Rayyne says, "The box was dropped by the Wyvern at the tower, where most of us sat those early days."

Rayyne says, "And it was dangerous, magical. "

Rayyne says, "It could not be moved or touched."

Rayyne says, "But we tried for what seemed weeks to open it."

Rayyne says, "The keys were found in boxes and around the volcano."

Rayyne says, "But, we could never get the four keys around the box at the same time."

Rayyne says, "All four were needed."

Rayyne says, "And so, the box was never opened with the keys."

Setzier grins.

Rayyne says, "To my knowledge, it just ....disappeared one day."

Setzier nods.

Setzier grins.

Setzier turns a page of his stained leather tome.

Setzier says, "Lets see..."

Setzier says, "When they arrived at the landing, Devestior gave Blades the golden key to protect and said he had to go back to his homeland..."

Setzier says, "he said he had business to attend there..."

Setzier says, "This is where Spike comes into play, which you will hear from Seckara when I'm finished..."

Seckara smiles.

Setzier turns a page of his stained leather tome.

Shallowgrave narrows his eyes.

Rentis glances at Shallowgrave.

Setzier says, "One day... at Hearthstone..."

>Setzier says, "A white wizard came seeking Devestior."

Setzier says, "Blades interrogated the wizard for a while, saying that devestior must have something he wanted to be so desperate about finding him."

Setzier says, "The wizard said Devestior had a key..."

Setzier says, "Blades then, trying to tick the wizard said that Devestior had gone to the isle with the key and he then showed the wizard the Star where he could sail to find him."

Setzier exclaims, "While later, Blades was in the Landing, he began to see visions of Devestior's slain body!"

Setzier says, "At the foot of V'tull no less."

Brookwyn blinks.

(Setzier nods to himself.)

Rentis blinks.

Seckara blinks.

Setzier says, "And a young elven girl crying over his corpse..."

Setzier glances at a dark stained leather tome embossed with a symbol of Fash'lo'nae.

Feindre rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Setzier says, "Later that day, the girl in the vision came to the landing with a blood stained letter for Blades.."

Absinia raises an eyebrow.

Amerlise wrinkles her nose.

Setzier says, "It was from Devestior and read, "I need your help my friend, venture to Teras Isle, I will find you.""

Setzier says, "That night Blades got on the star and sailed to Teras where he found Glotach roaming..."

Setzier turns a page of his stained leather tome.

(Lynda 's eyes widen as she listens intently)

Setzier says, "After going at it for a while, Devestior showed up, Glotach stopped trying to fight Blades, and turned to Devestior. Devestior grabbed Blades and they went off to the Star and back to the landing before Glotach could follow."

Setzier rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Setzier turns a page of his stained leather tome.

Setzier says, "One moment, more smudge writing.."

Setzier flips through the pages of his stained leather tome.

Setzier says, "Ah... I durn smudges..."

Setzier says, "Let me take you back a moment..."

Setzier says, "I apologise."

Amerlise smiles to herself, knowing that Setzier falls asleep with his head on his books and drools on them.

Seckara just nudged Amerlise.

Berrie giggles.

Ariyel bites her lip.

(Eratika stifles a giggle.)

Absinia grins.

Setzier says, "When Blades arrived at Teras and seen Glotach roaming the streets with the band of peopel protecting him, Glotach immedately turned to Blades when seeing him and swiped his tail at him."

Rentis rubs his chin thoughtfully.

(Miphnik tips his head)

Setzier says, "'Then....After going at it for a while, Devestior showed up, Glotach stopped trying to fight Blades, and turned to Devestior. Devestior grabbed Blades and they went off to the Star and back to the landing before Glotach could follow."

(Setzier nods to himself.)

Setzier says, "When Blades was in the landing, and the wizard came to him... searching for the keys..."

Setzier says, "While walking to the ship, the wizard yelled, "You have the key!"...The wizard snatched it from Blades' cloak and ran towards the gate. Blades caught up to the wizard at the gate, sliting him throat. After the wizard has breathed his last breathe, Blades searched through his clothing looking for the key, but the wizard had hid it."

Rentis squints.

Brookwyn leans forward.

Setzier says, "The wizard had hid it somewhere. A few minutes later a dark wizard showed up, saying he was a friend of Devestior. Blades told him that the white wizard had stolen the key from him and hid it before his death. The dark wizard said that he would search for the key and assured that he could be trusted. About 10 minutes later or so Devestior arrived, hearing of the keys disappearance. Blades and Devestior went off to the Wayside's inn..."

Lynda leans forward.

Setzier says, "Before Blades left he picked up the robes the wizard was wearing that were glowing brightly. They sat at a table and Blades showed Devestior the robes. Devestior said that it was a beacon to the other white wizards that their comrade had fallen, he said in time their army may come here to investigate. Devestior snatched up the robes, to take them away from the city. He then said that he must go to Bregenda to search for the key."

Setzier says, "There is where my tales end, however it does not. Before Blades left Wehnimer's Landing, to roam the world, he was last seen placing the golden key on his persona..."

Setzier just closed a dark stained leather tome embossed with a symbol of Fash'lo'nae.

Seckara smiles at Setzier.

Setzier asks, "Questions before Seckara begins hers?"

Setzier smiles.

Amerlise applauds.

Ariyel raises her hand.

Setzier points at Arianiss.

Seckara applauds.

Setzier winks at Amerlise.

Nouveux exclaims, " well said milord!"

Shallowgrave rubs a neatly trimmed black moustache.

Arianiss says, "Two actually."

Ariyel groans.

Ariyel asks, "you got ahead of me?"

You say, "Folks, we've only time for a few questions here, as we had a late start."

Ariyel leans on Arianiss.

Ariyel smiles impishly.

Arianiss asks, "Blades has the golden key and is arkati knows where. Do we still have posession of the other four?"

Shallowgrave says, "A thin tissue of lies but a well said one."

Nanna asks, "so this dark wizard? that was going to help blades look for the key?"

Arianiss just nudged Ariyel.

Kulldy says, "Does the white wizards have anything to do with the white knights what were seen outside the gates for the landing ?"

You say, "We'll have more Q&A time at the ending."

(Tilarium says quitly to himself 'why does this all sound familiur when this is the first time I've heard of it all?')

Rentis glances at Shallowgrave.

Nanna says, "ops"

Nanna whistles tunelessly to herself.

Seckara smiles at you.

Brookwyn stands up.

Setzier says, "The other four, are in possession of someone. I do not believe we've discovered who all has them..."

Arianiss nods.

Rentis says, "you talk too much Ratkiller"

Setzier says, "Devestior is still trying to collect them."

Seckara nods to Rentis.

Arianiss asks, "And secondly, why are the dark wizards involved?"

Nanna nods to Arianiss.

Setzier says, "The dark wizards have apparently turned on Devestior as of now, and I've no clue why."

Arianiss nods.

Nanna asks, "who are the dark wizards They're good?"

Seckara nods to Setzier.

Ariyel peers quizzically at Setzier.

Rentis moves to stand in front of Shallowgrave.

Rentis asks, "yes?"

Nanna furrows her brow.

Setzier says, "Raise hands please.."

Setzier clears his throat.

Ariyel raises her hand.

Nanna raises her hand.

Setzier asks, "That it ARianiss?"

Arianiss nods.

Setzier points at Ariyel.

Ariyel says, "I have several questions, hopefully brief enough to answer rapidly.."

Setzier gazes heavenward.

Shallowgrave says, "If you wish to puff yourself up with foolish and ill placed pride perhaps you should wait until this storytime is over."

Shallowgrave nods to Rentis.

Rentis glances at Shallowgrave.

Ariyel asks, "You just said the Dark Wizards have apparently "turned on" Devestior.. does that imply that Devestior was at one time aligned with them?"

Setzier says, "I'll answer a few of them, there is a question and answer period after Seckara."

Absinia glances at Shallowgrave.

Setzier winks at Arianiss.

Rentis says, "Pride never needs to wait"

Arianiss stares at Setzier.

Setzier says, "He was... at one time, it seems."

(Shallowgrave steps to the side and does not further acknowledge Rentis's presence.)

Rentis scoffs.

Nanna asks, "so what makes you think they've turned on him?"

Ariyel says, "now then.. you said that Devestior gave Blades the key before going back to his home area.."

Ariyel coughs.

Ariyel asks, "if I may finish?"

Setzier pokes Nanna in the ribs.

Setzier nods to Arianiss.

Nanna shrugs.

Setzier nods to Ariyel.

Rentis says, "brave enuff to kill a defenseless rat but not man enuff to stand up to lil ole me"

Rentis rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Ariyel says, "Yet then Devestior supposedly summoned Blades to Teras.. but Blades had given Teras as Devestior's location as a lie"

Ariyel asks, "that all seems a rather confused and suspicious set of circumstances.. is there an explanation for why Devestior remained in this area rather than going back to Bregenda as he stated he was?"

Tilarium says, "you ended by saying that Blades was last seen placing the golden key on his persona. From what I have been told the last anyone had heard of Blades was his soul being lost to the demonic."

Setzier says, "I apologise for that, parts of my story was jumbled due to smudging of ink..."

Amerlise looks over at Tilarium and shakes her head.

Tilarium sits down.

Setzier looks over at Tilarium and shakes his head.

You say, "Blades did not go Demonic."

Seckara says, "I heard he went on a journey ..."

Amerlise says, "Blades did nae demonic."

Shallowgrave stares off into space.

Tilarium says, "that is good to hear"

Seckara shrugs.

Rentis rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Ariyel smiles slightly, waiting for clarification.

Setzier asks, "I again, apologise for the jumbling of words, if I confused you more, see me later and I'll try and fix my tome... anyone else?"

Seckara smiles.

You say, "Thank you, Setzier. We'll have time for more questions at the end."

Rentis gives his orange toy rat a warm hug.

Vandrel says, " sounds good, I'm looking forward to hearing about Spike"

You say, "And now, Lady Seckara will tell us of Spike..."

You say, "The War Rat...."

Rentis nods to Seckara.

Rentis applauds.

You say, "and his connections to Devestior."

You nod to Seckara.

Ariyel smiles in anticipation.

Kerl applauds.

(Seckara walks forward to the center of the room, then looks around at the crowd. She looks visibly nervous.)

(Shallowgrave scowls looking for all the world as if something he ate just disagreed with him.)

Shallowgrave glances at Seckara.

Ariyel moves to stand in front of Shallowgrave.

Ariyel coughs.

Rentis glances at Shallowgrave.

Nanna begins chuckling at Shallowgrave.

Ughsplat moves to stand in front of Seckara.

Seckara says, "Excuse me if I seem a bit jittery ... it's unnerving to be before such a crowd."

Arwen smiles and signals everyone to settle down.

Tilarium smiles at Seckara.

Emeraldwand smiles encouragily

(Seckara's eyes settle on Shallowgrave -- and it seems that his presence, in particular, has her most on edge.)

Meguas says, "Just imagin em all nekkid"

Shallowgrave smiles not at all.

Seckara begins chuckling at Meguas.

Tilarium nods to Meguas.

Tilarium chuckles.

Seckara says, "So long as a guard is kept near him ..."

Rentis glances at Shallowgrave.

(Seckara points at Shallowgrave Ratcatcher.)

Rentis moves to stand in front of Shallowgrave.

Ariyel shifts her weight.

Arianiss says, "I don't think he'd be foolish enough to attack here."

Arianiss waves his hand in a dismissive gesture.

Emeraldwand rubs a gold and silver rat pin.

Seckara says, "Because stories of Spike tend to make him tremble."

(Seckara glances at Shallowgrave and almost smiles.)

Rentis says, "let him tremble"

Ariyel chuckles.

Setzier touches one finger to his lips.

Seckara says, "So."

Shallowgrave says, "I have never attacked the deluded one. Please, proceed with your propaganda."

(Seckara looks up at the crowd.)

(Shallowgrave steps back.)

Seckara indicates her ritual book with a smile.

Lynda smiles innocently at Shallowgrave, trying to coax a little grin from him.

You say, "Please settle down."

Rentis raises an eyebrow.

Seckara clears her throat.

Seckara seems to be waiting for something.

Absinia asks, "Propaganda?"

Absinia glances at Shallowgrave.

Seckara says, "Let me ask, as I begin -- are there any among you who have never seen Spike? "

Seckara asks, "Would you raise your hand, please?"

(Lots of raised hands)

Tilarium says, "heard of but na seen"

Seckara says, "I commissioned an artist from the Coven to paint several parchments to help me illustrate this story. I tried to describe what I had seen to her, down to the last detail. She captured what I had seen with an amazing skill -- it was almost as if she used her magick to see into my mind s eye."

Seckara says, "So for those of you who have never seen Spike, I think this parchment has well captured his likeness. "

(Seckara opens the dusty witch's ritual book in her hand and shuffles through several painted parchments, before lifting one up to display to those in the room.)

Seckara recites:

"You see Spike the war rat
He appears to be a very old rat, has soft white fur, black paws from which protrude razor sharp claws, grey eyes and a long muscular tail.
He has a sparkle of intelligence in his eyes that seems to reflect great knowledge. Quite bigger then most of the animals you have seen, you estimate him to be close to ten feet long and weighing three hundred pounds.
He is wearing a gold ring, a green peridot ring, a grey hide armor, a spiked collar with a tag that reads "Spike"

(Seckara tilts the parchment so she too can see the painting, and stares at the image of Spike. She looks almost entranced, a giddy smile on her face.)

Arianiss smiles thinly.

Seckara says, "Spike ...."

Shallowgrave tightens his grip on his brass lantern.

Seckara asks, "Ahhh what words can be said, to express his valor?"

Breron glances at Shallowgrave.

Seckara smiles dreamily.

Seckara says, "With his strength, his awesome power, many of us thought him nearly immortal ..."

Seckara says, "He stood with us in the battle to win the Griffin Sword ... "

Seckara says, "He stood at the gate and kept watch over the healers and clerics during the threat of the Vvrael, when blood fell from the sky like rain ..."

Seckara exclaims, "And he even knocked Blades and Thalior to the ground a time or too, with a thwap of his enormous tail!"

Seckara grins.

(Seckara smiles blissfully, and it appears, from the expression on her face, that she could go on like this for days ... weeks ... perhaps even years. But she quickly stops herself when she hears a loud cough from the back of the room.)

Seckara blushes a nice shade of off-pink.

Seckara says, "But my story for you today is not just another triumphant tale of Spike s heroic deeds ..."

Seckara says, "Rather, I am going to tell you about the time some years ago when we feared that we had lost Spike -- forever."

A pained expression crosses Seckara's face.

Seckara says, "It was long ago ... before I had these lines around my eyes ... and before the town officials had granted me my title and my land ... "

Seckara says, "Yet I still remember that morning. I was strolling through the rolton fields southwest of town, following the path that led to my hunting grounds, when I came upon it ... "

Seckara says, "A grave ... craved of stone ... and marked by a spiked collar with a tag that read "Spike.""

Seckara furrows her brow.

Seckara says, "My heart twisted in my chest when I saw it ... it couldn t be true! Spike, who had always been strong enough to fight off even the strongest invading force ... Spike, who only had to twitch his whiskers to stun the young rat-hunters who had their eyes on his hide ... Spike, who had walked these lands when the only building that stood in the Landing was the Wayside Inn ..."

(Seckara again looks as if she could babble out for hours like this, but once again, a loud cough from the back of the room snaps her out of it.)

Seckara blushes a nice shade of off-pink.

Seckara asks, "This ageless furry hero ... dead?"

(Seckara lowers the parchment that had portrayed Spike in all his glory, and then holds up another parchment, this one painted in much darker hues.)

Rentis shakes his head.

Seckara recites:

"[Lower Dragonsclaw, Grasslands]
Growing among the warm grasses are a few scattered trees. It is hard to tell if the forest you can see to the west is encroaching upon the grasslands or if it is slowly being harvested and replaced for grazing. You also see a small rose, a small rose, a stone grave with some stuff on it, a single snow white rose and a spiked collar with a tag that reads "Spike".
Also here: Evelake, Larrious, Lord Lleto, Viansha, Sorandas, Lady Sespyria, Lady Thym. "

Seckara says, "I searched the faces of the people who were gathered around the stone grave. Tenitively I asked them ... "What has happened here?" No one answered for a moment. They just stared vacant-eyed at the cold gray stone. But I asked again, more insistently ... and after a time, a few people spoke ..."

Seckara says, "They had heard stories of a crying little boy coming into the Landing ..."

Seckara says, "This boy, whose name was Jake, said he was crying because of Spike ... Spike was dead, he said ... a fire ..."

Seckara says, "He was too young and too upset to tell the townsfolk exactly what had happened. He told the townsfolk all he could. Spike going home to a place beginning with a B ... a key ...big winged snakes ... black and white wizards ... a fire ..."

Seckara says, "It was this boy, Jake, who had led the townsfolk to the grave. He said it had been built by dwarves, and that the dwarves carried Spike's coffin and put it within the tomb. All the best clericks had been called to pray over the tomb ... to no avail. The strongest giantwomen and giantmen were called to try to pry it open ... nothing. "

Seckara says, "Despite their words, I could not accept it! Spike, my hero since childhood ..."

Seckara shakes her head.

Seckara shakes her head.

Seckara paces back and forth.

Seckara says, "I fell upon the stone grave and tore at it with my fingers, stabbed my imflass broadsword against it, trying to pry it open ... But my desperate attack on the grave left not a mark. And when my spirit gave out I collapsed against it, pressed my cheek against that cold gray stone, and wept."

Shallowgrave gives a sigh of disgust.

(Rentis comforts Seckara)

Kerl rubs Seckara gently.

Seckara hangs her head.

(Seckara 's eyes darken for a moment. She brushes her fingertips over the stone grave in the painting, then slowly lowers the parchment. )

Seckara says, "Lady Sespyria pulled me up, took the weapon from my hand, and hugged me. She said gently, "You just have to accept it ... he is gone."

Seckara frowns.

Seckara says, "My soul heavy with resignation, I joined the mourners keeping vigil at the grave. The crowd grew ... people who had never seen Spike, but had heard of his great deeds for the town, came with gifts ... black demon rum, toy rats, cheese, flowers ..."

Rentis shakes his head.

Ughsplat works his fingers under his lynx skull and scratches his head.

Seckara says, "The gifts piled up upon the grave until the momentos spilled over to the ground below -- small roses, wildflower bouquets, wreaths of mournblooms, weapons, toy rats, cheese ..."

(Seckara raises another parchment, apparently painted to be a close up of the previous painting. Painted in the same dark hues, this painting focuses only on the grave itself.)

Seckara says, "On the stone grave you see a quilted scarlet toy rat, a drake mace, a frosted raisin doughnut, a small rose, a small wildflower bouquet, a small snow lily bouquet, a small rose, a white carnation boutonniere, a bundle of rat pelts, a small rose, a small flower, a small flower, a small rose, a wedge of mild goat cheese, some polished black coral, a smooth stone, a small rose, a small rose, a plate of velnalin steak, a single red rose, a white flask, a single red rose, a small rose, a single red rose, "

Rentis nods.

Seckara says, "Many of us kept vigil through the night ... with Tlilok casting its red glow on the night sky, all of us huddled together to escape the chill in the air."

Seckara says, "Only Setzier stood by himself."

Seckara says, "Of all of the mourners, Setzier was one of the few who could call Spike friend. "

Rentis nods to Seckara.

Seckara says, "Some of you may know Setzier now for his mad preaching of the power of Sheru. But this night was well before Sheru had gripped Setzier s mind."

Shallowgrave clears his throat.

Nanna chuckles.

Seckara says, "Fortunate he's left, or he'd have my head for insulting Sheru."

Seckara winks.

Rentis grins.

Seckara says, "Setzier stood back from the rest of us, kneeling alone and keeping vigil, his dark form rocking backward and forward as he chanted his goodbye to Spike all through the night ..."

(Seckara lowers her voice to a hoarse whisper.)

Seckara recites:

"Setzier says, "Rest in peace, Spike. Your life now complete. Your mortal shell's task of defending Wehnimer is now over. The task has been handed down to the races and people of the town.""

Seckara recites:

"Setzier says, "You are now free from prejudice, free from being attacked, and free with the ability to roam the night skies. Spike, you will not be forgotten. Your name shall live in the hearts of those lives you've entered.""

Seckara recites:

"Setzier says, " Rest well, Spike, know the town will be safe, and know your birth place shall not be touched. Sleep well, Spike, sleep well....""

Seckara says, "It surprised none of us who had seen the haunted look in Setzier s eyes when he began to have visions."

Seckara exclaims, "Only days after the grave hard been found, as many of us still stood there and mourned, some saw a grey mist appear from no where and move over the grave. A light rain began to fall -- and then suddenly, a lightning bolt!"

Seckara says, "The power of the flash knocked Setzier to the ground. His body was still for a moment, and then slowly, he pressed himself up. Setzier turned to address the mourners, but he spoke with a voice not his own --"

Lynda leans forward.

Seckara recites:

"I see a man," he said, his voice crackling with a strange energy. "A man, dressed in black."
"The man, he commands a wyvern."
"He commands it to destroy a tower!"
"And in the tower, I see a war rat!"
"Fire ... the tower! I can see nothing but flames!"

A pained expression crosses Seckara's face.

Seckara says, "And with this Setzier s body again collapsed to the ground. When he awoke, he could not remember what he had spoken, and the mourners at the tomb had to tell him what he had seen."

Seckara says, "We took this as a sign that Spike s ghost was trying to speak to us from the grave to tell us who had murdered him, using Setzier as his medium. From what Setzier s vision had told us, we thought we knew immediately the identity of Spike s murderer -- a dark-clothed stranger who had just returned to town by the name of Devestior, a Baron from the land of Breganda."

Nouveux gasps.

(Seckara holds out another parchment. An tall, sininster figure dressed all in black stands out against a swirling grey and white background.)

Seckara recites:

"You see Lord Devestior Alasian the Dark Elf.
He appears to be in his 140's, has long, straight black hair, dark eyes, and very dark skin.
He is in good shape.
He is holding a black assassin's blade in his right hand.
He is wearing a midnight black rose, a gold ring, a crystal amulet, a black aventail, a black leather satchel, a black helm, a flowing black cape, a grey stone amulet, a black leather sheath with a spider web etched in silver, a pair of black leather bracers with a great spider"

Seckara says, "Here, if you look, you can see the assassin's blade that Setzier spoke of earlier ..."

(Seckara touches the parchment lightly.)

Seckara says, "Some called Devestior an assassin, others named him a foreign dignitary. But no one disagreed that the man had power. He knew how to cast spells from every circle of magick, and had mastered every known tongue. He could disappear with a snap of his fingers. And he even boasted of commanding wyvern."

Rentis rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Seckara says, "It didn t take long before the news of Setzier s visions and our suspicions spread -- Devestior was the prime suspect in the murder of Spike the war rat. But the city officials, in their love for silver, fawned all over Devestior ... they invited him to the gala at the Silvergate, and while he was in attendance, he had no shortage of dance partners ..."

Seckara exclaims, "So many people, it seemed, wanted to sniff his power ... the townsfolk, dressed in their finest, would shove against each other for the chance to fawn at his feet ... a murderer!"

Seckara rolls her eyes.

Seckara waves her hand in a dismissive gesture.

Seckara says, "A few of us who could stand it no more made our accusations public. Malicae, Setzier, and I, among others, accused Devestior to his face."

Seckara exclaims, "But he denied having anything to do with Spike s death. He claimed, rather, to have been Spike s friend. And he had the nerve to tell us that he still believed Spike to be alive!"

Seckara shakes her head.

Seckara paces back and forth.

Shallowgrave smiles not at all. He stands with almost statue-like stillness as he listens to Seckara's tale but signs of his efforts to remain quiet and stomach the storytelling without comment are starting to show.

Seckara says, "Madness!" we shouted back to him! "Have you not seen the grave?! Spike is dead, and buried. You tease us with false hope, only to throw us off your trail!"

Shallowgrave begins to twitch as he glances at Seckara.

(Seckara glances at Shallowgrave, and almost smiles.)

Rentis moves to stand in front of Shallowgrave.

Rentis mutters under his breath.

Seckara says, "I thought you would like this part, Ratcatcher ... with Spike dead ..."

Seckara chuckles.

Shallowgrave furrows his brow.

Seckara says, "Well, Devestior said that the grave meant nothing."

Seckara says, " "No," he said. "Someone is trying to make me look guilty -- and I think it is most likely the white wizards. They must want to turn the townspeople against me.""

Seckara says, "Devestior said that he and the wizards were in the midst of a long struggle. I never listened, when Devestior talked on about white wizards and dark wizards and keys. I thought it all rubbish, meant to cover up the truth -- that Devestior had killed Spike."

Seckara says, "But Devestior claimed he was framed, and that he still had the sense that Spike was alive. He told us that the white wizards had created the "ILLUSION" of a grave. He claimed that Setzier s visions also were mere ILLUSIONS -- tricks that the white wizards used to make the townsfolk think that Devestior was a murderer and thereby turn against him."

Seckara says, "No, Devestior," we said. "The grave is no illusion."

Seckara says, "He went then, to the grave, and stood over it. And then, with incantations and gestures, he moved his hand over the stone marker."

(Seckara mimics the motion with her hand, palm down, in a circle in front of her.)

Seckara says, "Then, all signs of the grave disappeared. There, where the grave had been, there was only fresh grass. The only sign that Spike's grave had even been there was the spiked collar that had marked the gravestone. It now sat alone on the grass, with its small tag that said "Spike." "

Rentis blinks.

Eratika's jaw drops.

Ughsplat raises his hand.

Shallowgrave gives a sigh of disappointment.

Tessarah sighs.

You say, "Hold questions til later, please."

You smile.

Seckara smiles at you.

Rentis glances at Shallowgrave.

Seckara says, "Devestior picked up the collar and slipped it inside his leather satchel."

Seckara says, " "You see?" he said. "The grave was just an illusion.""

Seckara says, "Now I've dissolved the magick that was upon it ... "

Seckara frowns.

Seckara says, "You can imagine what we thought."

Rentis nods to Seckara.

Seckara says, "We said to him, "YOUR magick here is the illusion, Devestior. You have masked Spike's grave, you have hidden from us the last place where we had to mourn him. Perhaps you think that by concealing his grave, we shall forget him, and so forget to come after you -- his murderer! But we shall not forget!""

Seckara says, "Devestior shook his head. He said he was taking the collar. He claimed that by holding a collar that Spike had worn, he would be better able to channel his energy toward finding his "friend.""

Rentis rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Seckara says, "We tried to stop him -- we said, you've already hidden his grave from us ... leave us his collar, as a memory ..."

Seckara says, "But with a snap of his fingers, Devestior was gone."

Seckara snaps her fingers.

Seckara says, "Months passed."

Seckara says, "Despite the evidence, the constable never arrested Devestior on the charge of Spike's murder. Perhaps the town officials feared Devestior's great power -- or perhaps he had filled the city coffers with coin from Breganda. All through these months, Devestior continued to insist he was not responsible for the death of Spike."

Seckara says, "Many came to believe in Devestior and forget what he had been accused of -- but a small group of us refused to forget."

Rentis nods.

Seckara says, "One Friday morning I climed the rope into the town well and was none too pleased to see Devestior sitting there with a crowd around him, fawning over his powers. I took a small toy assassin out of my backpack and began to pluck of its eyeballs, my eyes never leaving Devestior. I tore a gash in the assassin toy s stomach and pulled out the stuffing."

Seckara grins.

Tessarah grins.

Lynda gulps.

Brynnah flinches.

Berrie cowers away from Seckara!

Rentis nods to Seckara.

Rentis smiles.

Seckara says, "Well ... as much as I would have liked to do that to Devestior himself, at that time ..."

Seckara exclaims, "that was about as daring as I was willing to get!"

Eratika grins.

Lyvonia grins.

Seckara winks.

Meguas grins.

Tessarah grins.

You grin.

Seckara says, "Devestior s admirers told me that I should show some respect to a Baron of the land of Breganda."

You nod to Seckara.

Rentis scoffs.

Seckara scoffs.

Seckara nods to Rentis.

Seckara says, "I said I would show no respect to one who murdered Spike."

(Seckara sticks her chin out defiantly!)

Seckara slings a black buckler bound in crimson leather and tooled with the image of a proud war rat in a spiked collar off from over her shoulder.

Rentis nods to Seckara.

(Seckara struts around the room!)

Meguas chuckles.

(Shallowgrave visibly vibrates with the effort of remaining silent. It is evident from his expression though that he considers the entire tale a charade.)

Shallowgrave clenches his jaw.

(Seckara even dares to strut up near Shallowgrave -- but not too near, mind you.)

Seckara slings a black buckler bound in crimson leather and tooled with the image of a proud war rat in a spiked collar over her shoulder.

Rentis grins.

Shallowgrave glares at Seckara.

Rentis glares at Shallowgrave.

Rentis gives his orange toy rat a warm hug.

Seckara says, "My antics with the assassin toy earned Devestior's eye."

Seckara says, " "Spike lives," he said, as he had said many times before."

Seckara rolls her eyes.

Seckara says, "Setzier, who had been hidden, slipped out of the shadows, and shouted, "Then show him to us! We ll believe it when we see it!""

Seckara says, "Devestior paused for a moment, then calmly said, "If you wish to see Spike, join me.""

Brynnah gasps.

Seckara leans forward.

Seckara nods to Brynnah.

Seckara grins.

Rentis blinks at Seckara.

Lynda blinks.

Kerl grins.

Eratika cocks her head at Seckara.

Seckara smiles widely, her face brightening.

Seckara says, "Curious, many of us did. He led us across town to the North Dock, where he knelt. He took the spiked collar with a tag that reads "Spike" out from his leather satchel, and rubbed his fingers over it slowly. The collar suddenly turned a bright gold, and Devestior dropped it as if he had been shocked. He called out Spike's name, then yelled, "Your people have little faith in me! Arise and come forth!""

A pained expression crosses Feindre's face.

Seckara just touched a spiked leather collar.

Seckara says, "The crowd fidgeted nervously as a rush of wind swept around us. The collar turned from blue, to gray, to white. Devestior called again, "Spike! I know we have talked, come forth!"

Shallowgrave begins to twitch.

Rentis nods to Shallowgrave.

Rentis grins.

(Seckara 's voice grows louder, and her eyes fix on Shallowgrave as she continues.)

Seckara says, "A grey mist appeared off the waters of Darkstone Bay. Once more Devestior called, "Spike! I feel you, show yourself!""

(Seckara throws her arms up toward the ceiling, her fist clenched!)

Seckara says, "The ground rumbled violently, and many of us were knocked down. Devestior s face turned white, and he whispered, "Your request is granted. He comes." Devestior s body shuddered violently, and he fell into shock."

Eratika smiles nervously as she thrusts a few dirty fingers in her mouth. You see her begin to gnaw on some already well-chewed fingernails. Suddenly, Eratika spits out a jagged sliver of a nail with a loud PTOO!"

Rentis rubs his chin thoughtfully.

(Seckara holds absolutely still for a moment -- though it's obvious from her bright red cheeks and her clenched hands that it's taking all of her strength to contain her excitment!)

Seckara says, "Then out of the mist, we saw an enormous form emerge! It looked like ... it seemed to be ... Spike? The war rat stepped up to Devestior's body and sniffed at him."

(Shallowgrave 's lips pull back in a silent snarl.)

Meguas beams!

Seckara leans forward.

Rentis narrows his eyes.

You grin.

Seckara says, "We didn t know what to do, we were afraid to believe it, afraid that it was yet another illusion ... but it seemed so real ..."

Tessarah grins.

(Seckara reaches her hand out, as if trying to touch something that isn't there.)

Seckara says, "We leaned forward, unsure ... Sido asked, "Is it you?""

Seckara says, "The war rat looked over at us, and giggled madly. "

Meguas chuckles.

Arianiss shakes his head.

Firescope grins.

Seckara exclaims, "That giggle! That distinctive giggle!"

Seckara says, "Oh that giggle! We KNEW that mad giggle! It WAS Spike! We shouted for joy, and danced with him, yelling at the top of our lungs. He had returned! Spike picked up his collar from the dock and pulled it over his head. Sido asked, "Are you real?""

Rentis nods to Seckara.

Tessarah giggles.

Seckara beams!

Seckara says, "Yes I m real!" Spike said. "Ask me anything!"

Seckara says, "We asked him what had happened to him and where he had been. He said he was in a burning castle in a distant place, captured by the white wizards, but that he had never died. Devestior, he said, had saved him, pulling him out of the fire by the collar."

A pained expression crosses Shallowgrave's face.

Seckara says, " "But what about the grave?!" we asked him. "The grave outside of town!""

Seckara says, "He had no idea that there had been a grave there."

Rentis nods to Seckara.

Seckara shrugs.

Seckara says, "Setzier asked, "Then what about the vision? Spike ... was it you ... that entered me? At your grave?""

Seckara says, "Spike said that he did not know what Setzir was talking about. Spike seemed to think that the grave was an illusion of the white wizards, and that the vision Setzir experienced incriminating Devestior in Spike's murder was also the evil magick of the white wizards."

Eratika rubs her chin thoughtfully.

Seckara says, "Spike believed the white wizards wanted the townspeople to distrust Devestior, and therefore not aid him in his quest to find Spike and the golden key. Devestior, rather than being the murderer of Spike, was a long time friend, and had known Spike since he was a very young war rat in the land of Breganda."

Seckara says, "Our attention turned to Devestior then, who had begun to wake from the trance. He was severely weakened by the summoning of Spike. Devestior said that those in Breganda learn how to summon each other, but that it can weaken or even kill one who attempts the summoning without knowing the location of the person one seeks."

Seckara says, "Devestior did recover, however ... so the story has a happy ending. From that time on, I have believed in Devestior, and have not doubted his word."

Seckara touches one finger to her lips.

Shallowgrave mutters foully.

Seckara says, "But to be a fair storyteller, I must also say that there are those who still mistrust Devestior, and who thought that it was a bit too "convenient" the way Spike returned and Devestior was embraces as a savior."

Rentis nods to Seckara.

Rentis scowls at Shallowgrave.

Kerl rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Seckara says, "Malicae, for instance, never came to believe in Devestior. He believes the "Spike" we saw on the North dock was not Spike at all, but some other creature that by Devestior's magick was made to look just like Spike. Malicae insists that even now, Devestior continues to trick us. He still believes the "real" Spike to be dead, or hidden in captivity."

Rentis nods.

Firescope rubs his chin thoughtfully.

Kulldy smiles at Dearlae.

Seckara says, "Of course, some of you may know Malicae. And if you know Malicae, you know he also believes that all the messages the runner and the young folk delivers are part of a secret plot against him. So you may want to take his conspiracy theory with a grain of salt."

Seckara winks.

Dearlae says, "malicae paranoid"

Lyvonia grins.

Seckara nods to Dearlae.

Rentis nods to Dearlae.

Seckara says, "I have told you what I believe."

Lailana grins.

You say, "Even I have my own doubts."

You smile at Seckara.

Seckara says, "And it's up to you to make your conclusions ..."

Seckara says, "There is that proverb, about madmen -- or madwomen -- speaking truth."

Seckara winks.