Blane, the insane

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Fume
Posts: 16
Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2022 7:02 am
Location: Australia

Blane, the insane

Post by Fume » Wed Jul 20, 2022 11:30 am

Blane was a slightly short wirey man in his early forties. Scars littered his hardened tattoed skin and his facal features were also scarred and stout. Unkept stubble grew out of his jawline and a heavy brow sagged over his dark brown eyes. His face was framed by a rustle of dark hair that was tied back into a short ponytail. His woodmans outfit was little more then a singlet and booted brown pants which exposed his well cut seasoned muscles. He wasn't a huge man, but he was strong and quick as many a foe had found out the hard way.
He sat at a wooden round hewn table in the Port Llast local tavern, a place he knew very well, for he had spent most of his life in and around Port Llast. The smokey room was filled with the chortling of local patrons and a bard singing to a played tune.
Sitting accross the table from him were his long time companions. A huge lumbering overweight halforc by name of Skallen in a plain dark smiths apron and overalls. To his right sat Mr Haze, a cryptic hooded fellow in black that favoured the shadows. When he did speak, it became clear to those who listened that his mind was not overly simple, but definately not that of one you would call sane. Reggie the militiaman sat otherside, he was a thin youngish bearded fellow with a beer that wore his bronze fullplate to the tavern, he was on duty after all.


Blane stared at his companions with an intense expression before he began.
"Skalyard, no where will you find a more wretched hive of scum and villiany!" He ended the statement with a drink from his ale mug. He accentuated the point by continuing to stare at his companions over his mug as he drank.
Skallen looked upwards a moment in thought, then with narrowed eyes at Blane he inquired.
"That's a frost bitten frontier town on an island up north init?"
"Aye, it is just that" nodded Blane.
Mr Haze drew a concealed dagger and stabbed it upright into the table top beside his ale.
"Who dies there for the steel of the master?" The others looked at him a moment then each other and shrugged. Ignoring that, Reggie spoke up.
"Yeah Skalyard, what about it then?" He inquired then took a drink of his beer.
Blane looked at the three intensely.
"That's where i'm headed!" he declared and then drank. The three looked at him momentarily and then burst out laughing.
The laughter died down as they realised Blane was serious and Skallen looked at his old friend with a meaningfull expression.
"You can't expect us all to just pull up roots now and go to Skalyard? Why? Your not makin' any sense!"
Blane shook his head, "no friend, this is somethin im doin on my own." Blane shot Mr Haze a look.
Mr Haze took his dagger off the table and concealed it. Skallen raged.
"Are ya daft man? Sure you used to be a bounty hunter of some renown...but that was decades ago! You cant look after yourself like ya used to."
Reggie interjected. "Skallens right, i've heard only bad things about that place. With no one to watch your back, you'll quite likely end up dead like..." Reggie stopped with a look of shock on his face that one who just slipped up wears. Blane glared at him.
"Like Jess you mean? He inquired sharply. Reggie gave Blane a remorsefull expression.
"We all loved her too" Skallen declared. Diffusing the situation. Blane glared at them.
"I may be a bit rusty, but don't go writing me off just yet. Look, I sail in the morning on the seasonal merchant run. Got a job as a rigger under captain Vance.
Skallen nodded thoughtfully. "Tough old bird that guy, he knows the sea"
Blane looked at the three with a conceding expression.
"Look guys, i've sold off the farmstead and settled my affairs. I'm movin on, this place, it ain't the same since she died." Blane glanced about, "just a bunch of painfull memories now" he added before taking another drink. There was a reflective silence for a moment before Mr Haze spoke. "This night measures the end of us then, not by dagger or sword, but by the love of a woman" he declared philosophically.
The four reflected on that a moment before Blane broke the silence."Lighten up Mr H, im just...taking a holiday is all!" The three looked at Blane, unconvinced. Skallen raised his hand and yelled.
"MORE BEER!"

Fume
Posts: 16
Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2022 7:02 am
Location: Australia

Re: Blane, the insane

Post by Fume » Tue Jul 26, 2022 9:36 am

Blane stepped out of the Skal lodge and blinked up at the bright white clouds above as a light morning dusting of snow gently drifted down to the white snow covered ground.
Instinctively, he looked accross to the gates, counting the guard, then accross the town up to the northern elevation spotting another, then he blinked as searched through the foggy air, finally spotting the guard doing his rounds on the western elevation. He nodded approvingly, by extension he saw what the guards saw in terms of trouble, and in terms of trouble, that meant there wasn't any of significance to speak of.
He stretched a little then with a hot beverage in hand, made his way down the main road toward the trade post.

He passed the towns central Nexus, avoiding the smell of an ox and glancing briefly at the motley crew of adventurers and sellswords around the campfire. Some discussed plans for expeditions into the wilds while others told stories of adventures had. Blane regarded them positively. He considered telling stories of when he was a soldier then freelance bounty hunter, and a greataxe called Valtraxis, Flowing steel. But then, everyone would just start calling him crazy again.

As he passed the stone temple where the pastor gave his aid and supplies, he spotted more bodies strewn about, hopefull companions having delivered them through the night, hoping for divine intervention. Among them were two more corpses killed and decapitatated by the town it seemed, messages scrawled on notes left by their lifeless piked heads.
MURDERER, NECROMANCER.
He nodded to the pastor as he walked by.
"Busy morning I see pastor!" Noted Blane. The pastor stared at him with a mirthless expression of conviction.
Blane shrugged and continued to the trade post. He pitied that pastor. The man was constantly bombarded by an endless sea of would be adventurers corpses.

Blane entered the trade post and fired up the forge, it was time to make a new axe. As he worked the raw material into shape, he lifted and turned it, lifted and turned it, beating it into shape with his hammer.
He gazed at his work with a gleam in his eyes. He brought the molten metal up close to his face and whispered to it.
"I name you Ren!" He stated as he stared at the molten stump with a satisfied crazed smile. He brought it down onto the anvil. He whispered rythmically to it, almost songlike, as he beat it in time with his forging hammer.
"Ren the lucky!" Clang!
"Ren the couragous!" Clang! He stopped a moment.
"Ren, to Rend the enemy!" He finally announced. With a growl he brought the hammer down hard. CLANG!!!

Days later, Ren had almost fully taken shape. A sharp crescent shaped double bladed greataxe which Blane now methodically smoothed and finished with a wetstone, constantly he worked the now shiny metal into perfection.
"They used to call me Blane, the insane." He told the axe as he worked it,"No doubt, they will around here too once they find out how I talk to my creations. You will be the bane of all enemies. Swift, and sharp, you'll cut through flesh and bone just as cleanly as you cut through the air. The saviour of your wielder, you'll bring all foes to the ground. Lakes of blood drawn by your edge shall form in your wake, and still, you will thirst for more!" Blane told it reassuringly, working the edge carefully and skillfully. He stopped a moment and reflected on a memory. It brought half a smile to his face. He snapped out of it and continued working the near finished Ren. He continued talking to it, heartfully, as a teacher guides its pupil.
"Perhaps one day, when your strong enough, you will even leave your masters hand and fight of your own will should the need arise, as my Valtraxis used to. Oh, what an axe he was, flowing steel!" Blane stopped once more, reminiscing in awe, as a nearby local regarded him with a concerned expression.

Fume
Posts: 16
Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2022 7:02 am
Location: Australia

Re: Blane, the insane

Post by Fume » Fri Aug 05, 2022 11:38 am

Blane gave a broken toothed grin to Vanessa, who sat accross from him in the Skalyard tavern. He'd met the commoner only hours earlier in the Skalyard tavern and Blane had bought her a drink. Oddly, she found Blanes roughly hewn features alluring, and he wasn't going to look a gift horse in the mouth.
She stood up and gave him a peck on the cheek as it was time for her to go rest. It was early hours and she had work in the morning.
"Meet me tomorrow?" She inquired. Blane gave her a nod as he sculled his mug of ale and burped, then wiped his mouth with his forearm.
"You can count on it!. The mayors pleaded with me to sort out some giant mushroom in the upperdark...I'll be back by the morrows nightfall." He said confidently.
"How exciting! Do be carefull." Vanessa replied. She smiled and left.
Blane grinned as he watched her leave. He sighed and looked at his axe.
"Come on Ren, lets get this writ done then." He said as he picked it up and hefted it over his shoulder.

Hours later, Blane had crossed the snowy Skalyard surroundings and entered the expansive caverns of the upperdark below. He had traversed them for hours now with little success, they twisted and turned and he was unable to reach his objective. The creatures which stalked the caverns attacked him constantly, and he began to tire of it all.
Just when he was about to give up and head back topside, fortune struck. He ran into a group that had work to clear the area. They knew the caverns well and invited Blane to join them.
They helped him complete his writ and he lent his axe to help them complete theirs. They were friendly decent folk, powerfull mages among them. Many a foe fell in their wake untill they had finally made their way to Dunmarle castle.
Blane was dirty and tired, he'd had enough of it and wanted to get back to Skal quicker then the travel charter his companions sought.
Luckily, he had a potion of attunement in his backpack that he had been saving for such an occasion. He had consulted a mage in town about it who had told him that drinking it would instantly return him there.
He popped the cork of the bottle and toasted his tired companions who eyed him curiously.
"Enjoy the trip back to Skal guys, im'a take a short cut!" He gave them a broken toothed grin and he drank the potion. A flash of light blinded him momentarily as he vanished before their eyes.

Blane felt a strange sensation as he was yanked from one place to another instantaneously. As his vision cured, the deserts bright endless sandy horizon came into focus all around him. There was sand and sun as far as the eye could see, and there was not even a hint of snow or anything that even remotely resembled  Skalyard and its surroundings. It was also hot. First the shock, then the horror of realisation hit him as he recounted what had just happened. He balled his fists and yelled up at skies
"NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO..."!

Fume
Posts: 16
Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2022 7:02 am
Location: Australia

Re: Blane, the insane

Post by Fume » Fri Aug 12, 2022 12:22 am

After raging and cussing for some time, throwing his helmet and kicking the sand, the situation slowly sank in and Blane eventually calmed down. He picked up his helmet,  climbed and stood upon a dune with his hands on his hips squinting around at the desert he now found himself in, with no idea where he was or any magical means to teleport out.

Then he spotted it, hidden in a depression in the dunes a partial ways off, what appeared to be an obscured wall of a structure. Licking his lips hopefully he made for it and it grew into a wayward temple and ruins,  sand blasted and partially buried.
There he came upon zealots following what appeared to be some kind of desert priestess. There was little in the way of supplies, but at least they were not hostile and structures offered some releif from the hot sun.
These zealots seemed almost bewitched by the priestess they called the Oracle. The little information he managed to garner from one of them was that he was in the lost desert, and that if he was to hope to walk out to civilisation, to head east by the fellows reckoning.

This was a serious situation that could easily lead to catastrophe if not handled carefully. He drew on his past experiences as a foot soldier, and his old commanders words returned to him.
"When heading into unknown enemy territory, hope for the best but be prepared for the worst. Gather as much knowledge as possible before departing.
Stock up on provisions and leave fully replenished.
Maintain a scout ahead with heavy backup closely behind. Secure the flank at all times with spotters."
Wait, he was alone, not all of it was of use. He remembered something more relevent.
"Maintain defensive formation untill contact is made and assessed. Check rations, calculate days and monitor them closely.
Once rations are depleted to three days, split allotments in half, then half again at 2 days.
That may buy you an extra week give or take at hard march but you'll be weak towards the end. Whatever needs doin, get it done by then."
Blane sighed. He checked his provisions. 2 weeks worth. He slung his greataxe that he normally travelled with, grabbed his shield and drew his sword. He assumed a defensive posture. He took a drink of water and then moved off in a brisk mechanical march eastward, using the sun to guide him.
The desert was hot and punishing. Creatures barring his path attacked him and sandstorms blew him around haplessly. On more then one occasion, he realised that the sands had tricked him into circling about, not wanting to give up their newest visitor.
Battered and blistered, hot and tired, after many a misadventure, Blane emerged from the desert a week later and took refuge in Sibayad. Now that he knew where he was, he was amazed at how far out the teleportation potion had thrown him. Sadly, he realised that it would be months before he could even think about returning to Skalyard and Vanessas dissapointed face flashed in his mind. Once rested up and fed, he checked the market stalls for any exotic goods and then made for the docks. He needed a port town now, somewhere he could plan his next move. Cordor came to mind.

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