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 Umara: The Catalyst for the Rebirth of Old Thay?
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15724 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2014 :  19:45:16  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Haven't really read through everyone else's responses, but I just finished reading the final installment of the last Elminster series, and taking what I read there with what little we know about the sundering (and their plans for the setting), here's what I speculate 'might' happen.

*** Spoiler Alert ***



In Elminster Enraged, we see The Simbul repairing tears in the Weave; apparently, there were a LOT of them. We only get a detailed version of the first repair, which had demons pouring through, but I get the idea that different 'rips' lead to different planes (The Hells, Abyss, maybe even Far Realms, etc...).

Now, we know that The Weave and Shadoweave are the two halves of the magic of the original Weave, when Selune cast her energy into Shar, which tore through her sister and made the power that would be formed into the magical Weave around Toril (Realmspace?) The sentience of the weave seems to come from a mortal, but the power came from the two goddesses - two halves of one whole. Light & Dark, etc.

I have some other theories about Silver/Blue/Black fire as well, and what they all really mean, but that doesn't matter for the purpose of this. What we do know is that Ed has a big hand in steering The Forgotten Realms right now, and I think what that means is we are going to get more of his original flavor, which would include his take on the Weave (which wasn't even called The Weave by him). We also know that Ed had it where The Weave (magic) = 'life'. I think that Blue Fire is closest to that concept - its the 'magic' inherent in all living things. That's why I think Ed focused on the Blue Fire (rather then the Silver) in his novel series - the world has been wounded, and it needs some of that 'life' returned to it, so that it may heal.

Now, hopefully you guys are still with me here... what if the Dread Rings were connected to the exact opposite? What if the Dread Rings were related to DS defiler magic, and 'drained life' (similar, BTW, to what the Phaerimm do)? It actually forms a new tear in the Weave that links Toril directly to the plane of death (the Shadow plane)! That would mean Szass Tam is trying to create new tears with his Dread Rings to obtain more power, draining all life from the region they encompass. On the flip-side we have The Simbul, who is trying to repair those tears in order to restore The Weave. It makes sense, no? That The Simbul would be on the exact opposite side as Szass Tam during this whole Weave Restoration/Sundering thing?

And then there is LARLOCH... Elminster specifically states (at the end of the novel) that he still has to deal with him. Since we know Szass Tam was steered down his current path by Larloch, it makes sense that it was Larloch himself who has been behind much of the 'badness' that has happened to the world since the ToT.

Further speculation - we've had a few hints that the Shadoweave was first formed after the fall of Netheril, and that Shar actually steered those events. What if she had a mortal archwizard's help along the way? What if Larloch is a fallen Chosen of Mystryl, and knew the Weave so intimately, that he was able to 'unspool' the dark from the light?

I think that if Mystra (Mystryl?) is successful with her bid to restore The Weave - the true, complete Weave - then there is a good chance that this renewal will restore Thay, at least to its pre-Spellplague form.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 11 Mar 2014 19:49:11
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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
6354 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2014 :  20:00:12  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ooh, I like the larloch as a fallen chosen of Mystryl who embraced Shar and sought to destroy the weave.

I wont be using the spell plague but I will definitely steal the larloch idea. Cheers Markus

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Lothlos
Learned Scribe

USA
111 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2014 :  21:16:50  Show Profile Send Lothlos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
That would also leave an out for Szass Tam to still retain his power and have living Zulkirs. I am not for some bam Old Thay is some how magically returned. But I am for a New Thay ruled similarly to the old. I do like Szass Tam as a powerful Red Wizard, but not so much as the ruler of an undead nation.

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.
-J.R.R. Tolkien

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36782 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2014 :  21:42:08  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Mystra has had a very hands-off approach to Larloch, so I'm not sure I can buy him being some fallen servant of Mystryl, or having worked against the Weave.

I'm also unsure where this idea came from that the Shadow Weave is half of the original Weave... If it was part of the original Weave, it never would have needed to have been created, it already would have existed. And if it was half of the original Weave, it wouldn't be weaker than the Weaver, it'd be equally strong. Lastly, if it was part of the original Weave, then it still should have been the purview of the goddess of the Weave.

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Eltheron
Senior Scribe

740 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2014 :  22:38:13  Show Profile Send Eltheron a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Mapolq

Aren't all the current Zulkirs already liches? I suppose they could outlaw necromancy and consider themselves the only ones who had sufficient power/responsibility to use it... but that wouldn't really push it to the underground. More like push it to the ivory tower or something.

Unless there's a new batch of living Zulkirs I haven't heard about. In any case, the conclave idea sounds really awesome. But I think it would make sense for the current Zulkirs to be the ones leading it, and to unseat Szass Tam, unless there's been another major power shake.


I'm not sure about all the current Zulkirs being liches. I'd hope not, but even if so they should just have some kind of underground secret society of living Red Archmages who rise up in a massive coup and blast all of the undead to smithereens. If there's an interesting undead here or there, sure let some escape and go into hiding - so those can be utilized by DMs or fanfic writers or novelists.

As for Szass Tam, he really doesn't have much story potential left any longer. I mean, what's honestly left for him that would be interesting? I think he should be consumed into the circle of Larloch's archliches and "diminish and go into the West" so to speak.

I really don't want to see anything more written about Dread Rings. Szass Tam did his thing and failed to become an uberdiety, and I never really liked that whole story anyway. It was just another remake of the Karsus story, without the satisfying smackdown at the end. We need something new and interesting for Thay, and nothing about Szass Tam or his ruined experiment should survive into the new era, IMO.

Larloch on the other hand is an immensely compelling cipher. He's immensely powerful, yet doesn't try to create empires. He can serve as a perfectly creepy and horrific NPC who interacts with low levels and high levels alike, without becoming the "next Shar" and he's mysterious and evil (in the sense that nearly all undead are considered evil) without being a moustache-twirling Snidely Whiplash like Cyric (and good god how I loathe Cyric, he's got to go).

Larloch is fascinating, his "long game" is fascinating, and he should just get irritated with Szass Tam's nonsense and put a final stop to it. Imagine if the secret Red Wizard conclave (which doesn't exist yet) has been propped up and supported secretly by Larloch and his agents for years, yet not as a true patron - even this war/coup is just one small puzzle piece in Larloch's grand design, whatever that might be.

I've always thought of Larloch as a kind of "check" on evil powers who get too powerful. A sort of "this far and no more" kind of thing that actually ends up supporting the balance while he slowly advances his own agenda, research, and so on. I don't think he works for Shar. If anything, I think he is Mystra's ally.


"The very best possible post-fourteenth-century Realms lets down those who love the specific, detailed social, political and magical situation, with its thousands of characters, developed over forty years, and want to learn more about it; and those who'd be open to a new one with equal depth, which there just isn't time to re-produce; and those repelled, some past the point of no return, by the bad-taste-and-plausibility gap of things done to the world when its guardianship was less careful."
--Faraer

Edited by - Eltheron on 11 Mar 2014 22:42:02
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sleyvas
Skilled Spell Strategist

USA
11724 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2014 :  22:51:25  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The Arcanamach

Just real quick. I'm in the 'Restory Thay' camp (in Thay, not Durpar or wherever). There are plenty of reasons for them not to return, I get that. But I want THAY back (with reasonable changes that is), not Thay/Durpar. Regardless, the plot hooks left from the Reaver make it obvious Thay will be restored on the plateau in some form or another.

Okay that said...

quote:
What Thay really needs (along with us) is a novel series detailing a hidden conclave of Red Wizards that have been underground and plotting for more than 100 years. It should have clear and interesting ties to the old ruling council, with ties to other exiled Red Wizards across Faerun. It should also have deep ritualistic ties to a secret past, something on the level of the real-world masons or similar to that. something we can sink our creative teeth into as both novel readers and DMs.

THIS is a great idea. Those Zulkirs who survived have been plotting for the last century? Works for me. Also, what if they got that ancient artifact (from the 1e days) working again? It would empower them to stop thwart Tam.

As far as Larloch is concerned. I'm convinced that he set Tam up for failure from the beginning. I'm also convinced that he has something to do with why Tam hasn't moved forward with his plans in the last century. I don't want Tam becoming enthralled or imprisoned by Larloch though (Tam is too powerful for that and Larloch is working on other things anyway).

I think the Dread Rings should be used to 'contain' Tam. Pieces of his soul could be broken up and imprisoned in them. He sort of becomes another Eltab but throughout Thay rather than just Eltabbar. I would allow him to project his influence, so he's still a danger, but said influence could take centuries to see him freed.



I do like the idea of the re-emergence and defining of the special artifact from 1e days. Especially if the Sundering kind of puts things back to Pre-ToT to a degree, perhaps the artifact is re-awakened. Now, what it does... up for grabs. This would again bring things back to "if Thay is returned to the old, its not a simple retcon".

As to a new Thay... I'm obviously for it. In fact, I'd rather see both (i.e. a schism amongst the Thayans) and not just one. (I'd also like to see High Imaskar displaced by Mulhorandi and they be forced to flee... possibly to join up with this new Thayan group... such that it has both Thayan and Imaskari influence). Why both? Well, Thayans were a fractured group as a country... why would their descendants 100 years later suddenly band together? Even amongst our small grouping, we can see that if I were representative of a portion of the populace, that portion of the populace would say "screw the homeland, lets go get new territory". The "external" one should have definitive differences... some of which I already laid out (possibly being less Mulan oriented and more humanocentric... not taking human slaves, etc..). Some may only want to see one, and that's cool too.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15724 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2014 :  23:47:41  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Apologies in-advance for this over-long post, but in order to explain how I have drawn my conclusions, i have to explain all the 'clues'. Please bear with me.

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

Mystra has had a very hands-off approach to Larloch, so I'm not sure I can buy him being some fallen servant of Mystryl, or having worked against the Weave.

I'm also unsure where this idea came from that the Shadow Weave is half of the original Weave... If it was part of the original Weave, it never would have needed to have been created, it already would have existed. And if it was half of the original Weave, it wouldn't be weaker than the Weaver, it'd be equally strong. Lastly, if it was part of the original Weave, then it still should have been the purview of the goddess of the Weave.

Well, The Weave (in its original form) held both the Light & Darkness - the powers that Selune and Shar held.

What we've had all along in the published Realms is the Arcane Weave, just called 'The Weave' by nearly everyone, because almost no-one knew it had been 'lessened' after the fall of Netheril. At the moment Karsus snatched the power away from Mystryl, the energy itself was returned to its primal, chaotic form, because he couldn't 'hold it together' (quite literally). This is the time when I think Larloch did whatever it was that he did. Note that he is trying to CONTROL Gates, and the portal-network itself is known as The Road of Stars & Shadows.

My Conjecture:
Somehow, he was able to unspool the strands of darkness & light from one-another, and when the mantle of the weave fell upon that 'special' girl in Cormyr, and she became Mystra, no-one realized that some of the power of The Weave had already been 'leeched-off'. It probably took years - centuries even - to fully unravel the two: he was 'pulling at the loose threads', so to speak.

The Weave as we have always known it was not 'all magic' as we were lead to believe in earlier editions - this was proven in 3e. I assume Mystra must have known she was missing that half of her power, or maybe she never noticed because she wasn't the same goddess of magic as before. Like I said, it may have been an extremely gradual thing, and by the time she took note of it, it was too late... and then the ToT happened. I think the Avatar Crisis was also orchestrated by Shar (note her Black Chronology), and that she foresaw the coming of Cyric and the death of Mystra, which gave her the chance to finally sever Mystra's connection to her half of the power once-and-for-all. However, when Mystra2 was killed it set-off the Spellplague, and ALL magic ran-amok; a good deal of 'old magic' had been created back when The weave was whole, and those artifacts had connections to both sides of the power. Note that Halruaa - inheritors of Netheril - got hit the hardest: only magic containing both halves of The Weave exploded in a cataclysmic fashion. That was because the magic was 'unraveling'.

In fact, there was so much raw energy flowing around everywhere that even Lolth made a try for it (with her Demonweave).

So let us just say that there are two sides to the magic - the 'blue' side, which = life/light (and Selune's portion), and the 'shadow' side, which = darkness/death. Silver Fire is the Woven strands of both - part of the conjoined Weave which existed right up until recently (because it took Larloch and Shar around 1300 years to fully untangle the two from each other). This is why in that story where Larloch meets Elminster in The Wood Between the Worlds, he misses the 'light side' of the magic, and asks El to 'caress' him with it - he is no longer able to touch it himself. (I am assuming the light/life half of the Silver Fire is anathema to his undead state).

It also helps explain the 'thing' between Larloch and Halaster; Halaster was probably a precursor to Larloch - he had himself attempted (milenia earlier) to separate the two sides of the magic, which eventually drove him mad. Picture Shar whispering 'dark secrets' into their ears - they left themselves open to that when they delved too deep into The weave's nature: The same thing happened to Karsus (according to the 3e super-module trilogy). When Halaster learned of Larloch's treachery (eventually, and because he himself was familiar with that path of knowledge), he tried to take control of the gates himself, to keep Larloch from getting control over them (once again, the Road of Stars & Shadows, which is actually the physical representation of The Weave - a vast web (which Ed called it) of energy encasing Toril. That IS the PoL&D - the Gates are the 'nodes' where strands meet, and if you control the Gates, you control The Weave.

When Halster was 'cured' of his insanity (Shar's influenced removed, as per Elminster in Hell), he went back to his plan to stop larloch, which in-turn would have stopped the Spellplague... but he was too late. Cyric killed Mystra and the final strands unraveled, and Halaster soul was shattered (or Sundered... much like the Weave itself, no?) Thats why the portal network disappeared in 4e - The Weave WAS the network!

You have to look at Ed's writing as one BIG story, not lots of little ones - he's been giving us pieces of the puzzle all along, and I think when he writes the final installment of The Sundering series, all the loose threads (in-setting and without) will all come together. The Weave will be restored, the Gates will reopen, 'life' will flow back into all the dark paces in the world... and we will have a renewal. Not a reboot, but a rebirth.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 13 Mar 2014 21:14:31
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sleyvas
Skilled Spell Strategist

USA
11724 Posts

Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  00:19:48  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oh, and just one note, IF someone were to setup another "Zulkirate" type society outside of Thay. Enough time has passed that the people may have developed other theories as to the "schools" of magic (after all, the Netherese only had 3 schools), and perhaps a rogue element like this might want to setup their governance along these lines. For instance, rather than the schools of summoning and abjuration... perhaps a group focuses on the magic of symbolism and calls themselves "runic geometrists" and its the study of Runic Geometry. Of course, that wouldn't cover all protection magic or the parts of conjuration. So, perhaps some of them pick up Imaskari lore and create a school of dimensionalism, which deals with the planar travel, teleportation, and extra-dimensional space type arts as well as dealing with the magical energies that create dimensional space constructs..... or what others would have called constructs made of force. Perhaps another group chooses to study Shadowmagic or the arts of darkness, and thereby the darker illusory arts as well as dealing with negative and cold energy. Another group might study the power of Visible Energy, and from this they also study the energies of transformation (i.e. fire, lightning, and force magic like magic missiles as well as abjurative type magics that deal with creating magic barriers made of magical energy). Another group might study the school of Beguilement (comprised of the schools of illusion and charm type magics). Another group might study "weather elementalism" in the form of wood, air, and water magics. The school of "substance" might involve earth and metal magics as well as transforming/shape changing magics. There might be others, but already there's 7 rough ideas (runic geometry, dimensionalism, shadowmagic, Visible Energy, beguilement, weather elementalism, substance)... someone else might come up with better names for them or a better division of abilities.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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sleyvas
Skilled Spell Strategist

USA
11724 Posts

Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  00:39:29  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oh, and on the idea of conquering a place like Durpar. One thing to consider is that you don't have to conquer the society. You just have to make the peasantry feel like their nobility is elitist and out of touch with them. Then present them with the idea that you can supplant the nobility and improve their lives. Then you need to prove that assertion.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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Mapolq
Senior Scribe

Brazil
466 Posts

Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  02:34:02  Show Profile Send Mapolq a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Sleyvas: I may be a bit too assertive sometimes - when trying to defend a point, I don't tend to say too many "buts" and "ifs" and nod to the other side. Just saying of course it wouldn't be nonsensical (necessarily) for a new Zulkirate to conquer another country, I just think it wouldn't be the best move given what we know. But things might happen. That said, I seriously don't see a group of renegade Red Wizards convincing the populace of most places that they'd be better off having them as rulers. Even if your ruler is bad, Thayans also are, and "better the devil you know". Unless the place is already in a state of actual civil unrest - so I think they might actually have a good shot at Calimshan of all places.

Markustay: I'll be honest - I shake my head at many of your theories. But with this one, I couldn't stop nodding vigorously. I'd love it if you're right, and I think you just might. This sounds very "Ed". The Halruaa explanation might also be correct. It could reasonably explain why Shade, in turn, did not explode - its mythallar and other magics were relying only on the Shadow Weave by then. I have one "correction" though, but I may be missing points you haven't mentioned. I don't think the Blue Fire is the "light side". Why not Silver Fire? After the Shadow Weave was gradually removed, "the Weave" started to become Silver - Selūne's Weave, even though Mystra was still its embodiment. Mystra became progressively less "neutral" and more Selūne-like, and Selūne grew "less important" as Mystra took guardianship of so much of what she stood for - eventually, perhaps, if Shar were to continue siphoning, Selūne and Mystra would merge, and that deity and Shar would be "perfect halves" again. But that state of affairs never really would allow Shar to have more than half the power over life (the Weave). So that could have eventually led her to kill Mystra again in order to try to seize advantage (and the Dread Rings might factor into that...?) and finally overcome the creation side of existence (Selūne). That seems to have failed, and actually merged the Weave into one again for reasons yet unknown - it created Blue Fire, which is the mixture of Selūne and Shar - it's the original essence of Mystryl.

That's my take anyway.

Never sleep under the jackfruit tree.

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Mapolq
Senior Scribe

Brazil
466 Posts

Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  02:47:11  Show Profile Send Mapolq a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'll add that (supposing this is reasonably accurate...) killing Mystra again (or even in the ToT) might not have been the plan Ed had, but he had to adapt to it.

While in 3e, I can see more of a "hey, Ed, didn't you have something big and setting-wide going behind the scenes, that we could use to make some fun stuff happen?" Ed says "...maybe" and we get Shades.

May be complete and utter nonsense, of course. But it's fun to speculate.

Never sleep under the jackfruit tree.

Tales of Moonsea - A Neverwinter Nights 2 Persistent World. Check out our website at http://www.talesofmoonsea.com and our video trailer at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=am304WqOAAo&feature=youtu.be, as well as our thread here at Candlekeep: http://www.forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=12955

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Edited by - Mapolq on 12 Mar 2014 02:56:50
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Eltheron
Senior Scribe

740 Posts

Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  03:36:15  Show Profile Send Eltheron a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

And then there is LARLOCH... Elminster specifically states (at the end of the novel) that he still has to deal with him. Since we know Szass Tam was steered down his current path by Larloch, it makes sense that it was Larloch himself who has been behind much of the 'badness' that has happened to the world since the ToT.

Further speculation - we've had a few hints that the Shadoweave was first formed after the fall of Netheril, and that Shar actually steered those events. What if she had a mortal archwizard's help along the way? What if Larloch is a fallen Chosen of Mystryl, and knew the Weave so intimately, that he was able to 'unspool' the dark from the light?

Nah, I just don't buy that Larloch is some kind of fallen Chosen of Mystra who later embraced Shar. It doesn't fit him.

Larloch loves being involved in things. Many things, at many levels. He craves knowledge and learning things, particularly "deep" secrets of the Art and the Weave.

He's certainly embraced shadow, but nothing about him gives a vibe that he's a Sharran that wants entropy and destruction. Larloch is just way too interested in the goings-on of nations and individuals, and way too fascinated with the "fiddly bits" of higher Art like portals and the Weave(s).

Remember the ending of one of Ed's novels when one of the Seven Sisters allowed him to see silver fire? His response was a kind of craving, a desire to know something that's been denied him because of his choices with using shadow magic. It wasn't the reaction of a Sharran or a Mystra-hater or even a classic power-hungry undead.

I think Elminster (and perhaps Mystra) fear him because he truly is an entity that has free will and isn't aligned with any deity. At the same time, he hasn't yet pulled anything seriously destructive and sometimes actually helps people. They fear him because they don't understand him, either his short or long term goals. It'd be really fascinating if he's ultimately shown to support the balance and just wants to be left to his own devices to exist and learn new things. And to retain that level of freedom and self-control, many of his actions are flat-out evil from an outsider's perspective (to someone who isn't playing a millenia-long game of "survive" without help from anyone else or any deity).

I'd be very, very disappointed if he turns out to be just an undead villain. And it'd be exceptionally cool IMO if Larloch viewed himself as a kind of "caretaker" of the darker Shadow Weave - building in a different, sideways direction on Markustay's theory. What if Larloch dislikes Shar, and yet "holds" the Shadow Weave stable for when the fully restored Mystra can reclaim it? Elminster and the Seven Sisters have only ever known Mystra and not the original Mystryl. So what seems to them like an enemy is really in fact an entity who is trying to find a way to restore Mystryl, the whole goddess and the whole weave.

Larloch remembers when magic was whole, complete, and Mystryl was perhaps his patron.


"The very best possible post-fourteenth-century Realms lets down those who love the specific, detailed social, political and magical situation, with its thousands of characters, developed over forty years, and want to learn more about it; and those who'd be open to a new one with equal depth, which there just isn't time to re-produce; and those repelled, some past the point of no return, by the bad-taste-and-plausibility gap of things done to the world when its guardianship was less careful."
--Faraer

Edited by - Eltheron on 12 Mar 2014 03:38:40
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Mapolq
Senior Scribe

Brazil
466 Posts

Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  03:45:02  Show Profile Send Mapolq a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, nothing says Larloch is Shar's servant. Markus was more implying he has sometimes been her ally. And allies can have different interests and even change sides eventually. Ed has implied Larloch is unparalelled in the knowledge of magic within Toril. And there really seems to be some sort of notion of "maintaining balance" permeating it all, in the sense the Larloch is/was by himself the necessary opposite to the Chosen of Mystra.

Never sleep under the jackfruit tree.

Tales of Moonsea - A Neverwinter Nights 2 Persistent World. Check out our website at http://www.talesofmoonsea.com and our video trailer at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=am304WqOAAo&feature=youtu.be, as well as our thread here at Candlekeep: http://www.forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=12955

My campaign thread: http://www.forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=16447
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36782 Posts

Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  04:52:29  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

You have to look at Ed's writing as one BIG story, not lots of little ones - he's been giving us pieces of the puzzle all along, and I think when he writes the final installment of The Sundering series, all the loose threads (in-setting and without) will all come together. The Weave will be restored, the Gates will reopen, 'life' will flow back into all the dark paces in the world... and we will have a renewal. Not a reboot, but a rebirth.



The Shadow Weave -- and its creation by Shar, which is canon -- was not something Ed wrote.

It's also canon that the Shadow Weave is not the equal of the regular Weave. I don't see how something can be half of a whole but less than the other half...

It's also not something removed from the Weave; it is a lesser, artificially-created replica of the original. Also canon.

I also don't understand how Mystra could somehow fail to notice a chunk of the Weave going missing.

And lastly, I don't know of anything that even implies a connection between Larloch and Shar. While there isn't anything explicitly ruling it out, I don't see that there is enough to assume there is anything there.

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Dennis
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  04:58:38  Show Profile Send Dennis a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Eltheron

I never really liked the concept of Dread Rings.
Just curious, have you read Richard's The Haunted Lands trilogy? If not, you may want to, if not for any other reason, at least to "help" you better understand what the Dread Rings really are and how significant (and interesting) they are in the context.

As for them being used by RAS, Richard said he wasn't even "asked" or informed by anyone from Wizards that RAS intended to use his creation (and yes, the Dread Rings are Richard's idea). Many scribes, I included, even pointed out elsewhere the discrepancy of dates used in both series with regard to when the Dread Rings were made.

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Eltheron
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  06:33:01  Show Profile Send Eltheron a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Dennis

quote:
Originally posted by Eltheron

I never really liked the concept of Dread Rings.
Just curious, have you read Richard's The Haunted Lands trilogy? If not, you may want to, if not for any other reason, at least to "help" you better understand what the Dread Rings really are and how significant (and interesting) they are in the context.


I have read that series, and I consider it to be one of the worst trilogies ever produced for the Realms. The plot, the characters, the pacing, and the outcome were all just plain awful. (And before anyone suggests it's an author dislike thing, that's not the case. I liked Dissolution and the Shattered Mask.)

I understand what the Dread Rings are, but I don't think they were particularly clever or interesting. Overblown and ridiculous would describe them better IMO.

If you liked that series or the concept of the Dread Rings, well, we'll just have to agree to disagree.


"The very best possible post-fourteenth-century Realms lets down those who love the specific, detailed social, political and magical situation, with its thousands of characters, developed over forty years, and want to learn more about it; and those who'd be open to a new one with equal depth, which there just isn't time to re-produce; and those repelled, some past the point of no return, by the bad-taste-and-plausibility gap of things done to the world when its guardianship was less careful."
--Faraer
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Mapolq
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  07:15:48  Show Profile Send Mapolq a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert



The Shadow Weave -- and its creation by Shar, which is canon -- was not something Ed wrote.

It's also canon that the Shadow Weave is not the equal of the regular Weave. I don't see how something can be half of a whole but less than the other half...

It's also not something removed from the Weave; it is a lesser, artificially-created replica of the original. Also canon.

I also don't understand how Mystra could somehow fail to notice a chunk of the Weave going missing.

And lastly, I don't know of anything that even implies a connection between Larloch and Shar. While there isn't anything explicitly ruling it out, I don't see that there is enough to assume there is anything there.



That is why I postulated Ed would have entered these bits of lore as response to other writer's creations. The Shadow Weave would naturally be less than the Weave because part of Shar's essence is still in the Weave along with Selūne's. The Shadow Weave was artificially created at some point, yes - when Shar drew the first bit of her essence to make a negative image of the Weave. After that, it was fueled. Mystra does notice part of the Weave is missing - all the Chosen would probably know it too, and know Shar is the culprit, and it's arguably the major point of their jobs to manage that without causing disturbances. And no, I don't know of anything connecting Larloch to Shar either. Like this entire paragraph it's entirely idle speculation based on grasping at straws.

Really, I'm just marvelling at how we could possibly make sense of such a pile of disparate stuff. And it does make sense, as in "it might possibly be!", not "it probably is". That's not usual really, most of the recent stuff I've seen is totally and utterly beyond all my attempts to make sense out of it. The problem of course, is that if this is one explanation that makes sense, there's still some others that also do, and it's usually much safer to bet you're wrong - and just admit you don't know what the hell it's all about. Which I do. But I'm mostly here for having fun talking crazy imaginary stuff with other fans, so...

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Edited by - Mapolq on 12 Mar 2014 07:16:21
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Markustay
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  13:36:41  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Eltheron

Nah, I just don't buy that Larloch is some kind of fallen Chosen of Mystra who later embraced Shar. It doesn't fit him.
Mystryl, NOT Mystra. Different goddess.

It may seem ike a minor point - and it might be - but we really don't know much at all about Mystryl, other then that she was a lot more neutral toward magic then the Mystras were (which does indeed imply she had more control over both her aspects).

I do not think in terms of 'good vs evil', and I truly doubt that the primordial Gods - those that were around "since the beginning" - think in those terms either. They simply represent their nature. Selune is the 'Yin', and Shar is the 'Yang' - Mystryl represented balance between the two (because light becomes meaningless without darkness, and life becomes meaningless without death). I theorize that Mystra - the goddess born after the fall of Nethril - was 'out of balance': that Shar, along with some her more powerful minions, was siphoning-off HER half of the energy. Larloch isn't so much a fallen Chosen as he is a 'failed' one - HIS goddess died. In the story where he appears with Elminster, it is quite clear that Silver fire is something he misses, which means he must have had his own at one time. Perhaps Mapolq is correct, and 'Silver' is the color of the weave's conjoined energy, but I think that should be more in-line with Selune and her power, which should only be HALF of The Weave. Blue Fire seems more about 'life' - or 'The Lurue' (another set of theories of mine) - and is a more primal, more encompassing form of magic (both halves of the magic - and perhaps more - without the governing force of The Weave).

@Sleyvas - I'm just NOT seeing the Red Wizards elsewhere as any sort of fix. Not saying anyone else's ideas are bad - I like most of them - but in order to do what they want to accomplish (FIX The Forgotten Realms), the Red Wizards have to be back in Thay. This is a completely meta-game scenario.

@Wooly - I completely understand where you are coming from - I also greatly dislike all the focus on Shar and 'shadowy' stuff. Recall, however, that Ed has mentioned that he did indeed have a 'doomsday switch' he designed into the setting - one he NEVER wanted used (which they used anyway - never show someone 'the red button'). That must mean that nearly all of their ideas have been derived from Ed's over-arching metaplot for The Realms; they just filled-in the details of what would set that chain of events into motion, and then went too far by actually carrying-out the 'doomsday' itself.

Now, we have Ed trying to steer this whole mess back on-track. He didn't create the mess - he just got handed the mop, and he is using everything HE knows about HIS setting to fix it - stuff we, and probably most of the designers - don't know everything about. Ed had probably planned on using the Malaugrym for these purposes (had he ever actually decided to us this behind-the-scenes- plot), but they went with Shades for whatever reason, and now he has to work with that. Note, however, that he doesn't really bother much with the Shades - he is still trying to steer everything back to what HE imagined the 'great apocalypse' would have been like. Larloch definitely fits into all of this, because of his dealing with Szass Tam, and because Elminster specifically says "I still have to deal with Larloch" when he is talking about 'making things right'.

Larloch is KEY - he is part of Ed's original metaplot, and if he truly is steering everything back to 'how it should be' (the flavor of HIS setting), then Larloch MUST be involved in all of this, on some level. Larloch is trying to control the portal network - it all goes back to that. Halaster is another key - somehow he tried to hold The Weave together when he knew what was happening, and he was 'shattered' along with it. I think once the Weave is restored we may get Halaster back as well... although I can see him taking Azuth's role. Elminster can't become a true god, because that would NOT be fixing the setting - that would be a MAJOR change. We have to factor everything we know about the 'big players' in-setting, and also everything we know about WotC's (and now Ed's) plans for it.

Then need to accomplish a reset, without actually doing a reset. That means putting nearly all the pieces back into play.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 12 Mar 2014 18:14:47
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Mapolq
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Brazil
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  14:31:56  Show Profile Send Mapolq a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

quote:
Originally posted by Eltheron

Nah, I just don't buy that Larloch is some kind of fallen Chosen of Mystra who later embraced Shar. It doesn't fit him.
Mystryl, NOT Mystra. Different goddess.

It may seem ike a minor point - and it might be - but we really don't know much at all about Mystryl, other then that she was a lot more neutral toward magic then the Mystras were (which does indeed imply she had more control over both her aspects).

I do not think in terms of 'good vs evil', and I truly doubt that the primordial Gods - those that were around "since the beginning" - think in those terms either. They simply represent their nature. Selune is the 'Yin', and Shar is the 'Yang' - Mystryl represented balance between the two (because light becomes meaningless without darkness, and life becomes meaningless without death). I theorize that Mystra - the goddess born after the fall of Nethril - was 'out of balance': that Shar, along with some her more powerful minions, was siphoning-off HER half of the energy. Larloch isn't so much a fallen Chosen as he is a 'failed' one - HIS goddess died. In the story where he appears with Elminster, it is quite clear that Silver fire is something he misses is, which means he must have had his own at one time. Perhaps Mapolq is correct, and 'Silver' is the color of the weave's conjoined energy, but I think that should be more in-line with Selune and her power, which should only be HALF of The Weave. Blue Fire seems mor about 'life' - or 'The Lurue' (another set of theories of mine) - and is a more primal, more encompassing form of magic (both halves of the magic - and perhaps more - without the governing force of The Weave).



That's what I said, Markus. Your first post seemed to suggest otherwise, probably just confusion. To make it clear:

Silver: Creation, "positive" - Selūne's essence.
"Shadow": Destruction, "negative" - Shar's essence.
Blue: Conjoined, life - Mystryl's essence (perhaps originally Lurue's).

I said Mystra's Weave was (mostly) Silver a thousand years after Netheril fell because Shar would have been removing her essence from it, so that would being Mystra closer to Selūne (and make Selūne a tad less powerful than Shar). Ed would probably not have factored Netheril into it originally either, since it didn't exist (at least not in any palpable form) but he would have had the general idea of an event in the distant past connected into this metaplot (and yes, Larloch could very well factor into it... I think Ed often hints that he's the a very important character, perhaps the most important, in all his writing about the Realms).


Never sleep under the jackfruit tree.

Tales of Moonsea - A Neverwinter Nights 2 Persistent World. Check out our website at http://www.talesofmoonsea.com and our video trailer at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=am304WqOAAo&feature=youtu.be, as well as our thread here at Candlekeep: http://www.forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=12955

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Edited by - Mapolq on 12 Mar 2014 14:45:22
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Eltheron
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  15:07:46  Show Profile Send Eltheron a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

quote:
Originally posted by Eltheron

Nah, I just don't buy that Larloch is some kind of fallen Chosen of Mystra who later embraced Shar. It doesn't fit him.
Mystryl, NOT Mystra. Different goddess.

It may seem ike a minor point - and it might be - but we really don't know much at all about Mystryl, other then that she was a lot more neutral toward magic then the Mystras were (which does indeed imply she had more control over both her aspects).

Well, yes and no. I do think we're all on to something when we speculate about Larloch and Mystryl, and the portal network being key to Larloch's plan to maintain or repair the balance of magic in some way.

But Mystra#1, Mystra#2, and even Mystra#3 now, all still do have access to the original Mystryl's memories. In that sense she's not a totally different goddess, just changed a little. And much of that change seems more about adjusting to current events rather than having her core essence change. One thing that seems quite clear from multiple perspectives is that gods don't really change that much when they take on new human host-vessels.

Case in point, Lolth took on her Yor'thae (Chosen) Danifae and remained largely unchanged. Just recently, Mask was reborn with his new Chosen; and his commentary was along the lines of, "More and more, I can't tell where my memories begin and Mask's end." So this indicates to me that Realmsian "god energy" contains the core essence and memories of a deity. How does one human lifetime compare to the expanded consciousness and memories of a centuries- or millenia-old deity? Rather like a glass of water being added to an ocean, it seems.

Of course, there are cases where only portfolios were transferred (e.g. Cyric, Finder) and memories/experience were not part of the deal. But even with Mystra#2, she slowly seemed to assimilate or re-gain memories of the older Mystra#1 and Mystryl. So she really is Mystryl.

Now I don't particularly like this kind of deity conceptualization myself. It's also why I never liked the Time of Troubles. I much prefer distant, less involved (actual) deities who aren't all from a single, simplistic world-wide pantheon or simply "holding" or managing portfolios for a while. The whole thing about trading portfolios strikes me as being very Piers Anthony "Incarnations"-like rather than having true gods. It worked for Piers Anthony as a fun series, but I really dislike it for the Realms.

But it is what it is, and it seems pretty clear that a deity's memories and experience survive to be passed on if a deity is reborn or takes on another host-form. In special cases the "essence" can be rejected and only the portfolio is taken, but as a general rule this isn't usual.

Which means that if Larloch is in some way working for the original Mystryl, he's not working for a different or dead goddess. He might be working to restore something Mystra lost, or to hold things "together" as best he can with the tools he has available to him. Because of how novels are paced, it might seem like Mystra#2's chaotic good period was significant and lengthy, or that Mystra#2 initial confusion and difficulty remembering her "old self" made her a different goddess. But neither are really true. Both were incredibly short and could not have lasted very long anyway. And given Larloch's incredibly long unlife, such things would not have mattered to him, really. He would have understood that Mystra was going through a chaotic, but brief, readjustment as her new human host was subsumed by the massive amount of memories and experience that IS Mystryl-Mystra.

quote:
I theorize that Mystra - the goddess born after the fall of Nethril - was 'out of balance'

I do agree with this bit of conjecture. But I don't think Shar was "siphoning away" any of her power or (formerly Sharran-side) shadow essence. Mystra is Mystryl, she didn't split like Tyche, and she wasn't fundamentally changed. But taking on a new human host after "death" does seem to be chaotic enough (to other deities as well) that there's a short period of confusion and re-integration. It might even be necessary for the re-integration of old memories to be slow, so that the new human host isn't driven utterly mad by the millenia of memories flooding back too quickly.

quote:
Larloch definitely fits into all of this, because of his dealing with Szass Tam, and because Elminster specifically says "I still have to deal with Larloch" when he is talking about 'making things right'.

Larloch is KEY - he is part of Ed's original metaplot, and if he truly is steering everything back to 'how it should be' (the flavor of HIS setting), then Larloch MUST be involved in all of this, on some level. Larloch is trying to control the portal network - it all goes back to that.

On these points, I totally agree. I suspect that part of the final Sundering book (Ed's novel) will involve Larloch and a number of things will be revealed about Larloch's interest in the portals. Hopefully, anyway.

quote:
Halaster is another key - somehow he tried to hold The Weave together when he knew what was happening, and he was 'shattered' along with it. I think once the Weave is restored we may get Halaster back as well... although I can see hm more in the role as taking Azuth's place.

I'm not real sure about this, though. Halaster was certainly doing something interesting with his ritual, but I can't see him as a "key" or even a key player. I really doubt that he will be involved much, other than perhaps someone talking about what he was trying to accomplish with the ritual. I also don't see Halaster as being restored, and certainly not taking the place of Azuth.

Since you brought up Azuth, there IS something huge going on with Azuth and his supposed death. Somehow, I think we'll discover that Asmodeus has been drawing on Azuth's power, but that Azuth was never fully consumed or killed. What if a remnant of Azuth (his memories, experience, and a fraction of his divine power) still exist uncorrupted within Asmodeus, and the devil-god is constantly fighting Azuth within his own mind? Whatever is happening, though, Erin Evans' novels will probably get at this question.


"The very best possible post-fourteenth-century Realms lets down those who love the specific, detailed social, political and magical situation, with its thousands of characters, developed over forty years, and want to learn more about it; and those who'd be open to a new one with equal depth, which there just isn't time to re-produce; and those repelled, some past the point of no return, by the bad-taste-and-plausibility gap of things done to the world when its guardianship was less careful."
--Faraer

Edited by - Eltheron on 12 Mar 2014 15:18:11
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Mapolq
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Brazil
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  16:33:18  Show Profile Send Mapolq a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm not talking about Mystra #2 really, I agree that her "reign" was so brief as to be insignificant. I'm talking about Mystra #1. Since about the time where she sired the Seven Sisters, she seems to be taking a very different role than the one she did as Mystryl.

Note I'm not saying "Shar has siphoned away essence from Mystryl, thus Mystryl must have changed". I'm saying "Shar may have siphoned away essence from Mystryl, and that could explain why we have been seeing her change for centuries". The theory is better than most (for me) precisely because it explains some of what I read from every edition of the Realms, and felt about it, while postulating relatively little (still quite a lot, but not as much as usual).

(Wrote a large topic here, but realised it's gone completely and utterly off-topic... I'll probably re-use it later)


Never sleep under the jackfruit tree.

Tales of Moonsea - A Neverwinter Nights 2 Persistent World. Check out our website at http://www.talesofmoonsea.com and our video trailer at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=am304WqOAAo&feature=youtu.be, as well as our thread here at Candlekeep: http://www.forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=12955

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Edited by - Mapolq on 12 Mar 2014 17:21:03
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Eltheron
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  17:08:56  Show Profile Send Eltheron a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Mapolq

I'm not talking about Mystra #2 really, I agree that her "reign" was so brief as to be insignificant. I'm talking about Mystra #1. Since about the time where she sired the Seven Sisters, she seems to be taking a very different role than the one she did as Mystryl.

Note I'm not saying "Shar has siphoned away essence from Mystryl, thus Mystryl must have changed". I'm saying "Shar may have siphoned away essence from Mystryl, and that could explain why we have been seeing her change for centuries". The theory is better than most (for me) precisely because it explains some of what I read from every edition of the Realms, and felt about it, while postulating relatively little (still quite a lot, but not as much as usual).


Hm, I dunno. I don't really see Mystra#1 as being or acting differently than either Mystryl or Mystra#2. I'm not seeing the "change over centuries" at all, really. How do you see her role as having changed or her acting differently?

I do think she has been responding to unusual, unique things that threaten her existence, but I also think she has a bit of insider information given that her portfolio includes Time. She may not know the exact future (because it's not "set" or fated), but she can see many possible future timelines and estimate their probability - which to some degree is reflected somewhat in her servant Savras.

If it seems "odd" that she decided to birth the Seven Sisters, it's probably more the case that she saw a number of possible futures where she would need some divine energy storage vessels (for self-protection). But I don't think this would be "out of character" for the original Mystryl, really.

This "siphoning by Shar" idea is possible, but I really don't see Mystryl or Mystra as changing dramatically in her character because of energy loss. In 3E, Mystra was apparently so powerful compared to the other gods that AO "made her" spread her power into various Chosen. We could question whether or not that tidbit about AO was actually true, but her power level was extremely high with or without considering her Chosen.

If we then say that the original Mystryl was vastly more powerful than a late 3E Mystra, because half of her original energy was "siphoned" or even just blocked by Shar, then we'd have to conclude that the original Mystryl was almost at the level of an Overdiety. I just don't see that, really.



"The very best possible post-fourteenth-century Realms lets down those who love the specific, detailed social, political and magical situation, with its thousands of characters, developed over forty years, and want to learn more about it; and those who'd be open to a new one with equal depth, which there just isn't time to re-produce; and those repelled, some past the point of no return, by the bad-taste-and-plausibility gap of things done to the world when its guardianship was less careful."
--Faraer

Edited by - Eltheron on 12 Mar 2014 17:11:38
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Mapolq
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  17:27:24  Show Profile Send Mapolq a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, there's a difference between the power a deity has due to its essence and the power it has due to its portfolio. Incidentally, after Mystryl died, didn't the portfolio of Time go away? Time wasn't linked to Mystryl's essence, it was just a portfolio she held, no?

So by the same token, Mystryl and all the Mystras are not powerful just because of their primordial essence, but also because of the portfolio of Magic. So it could be that Mystryl was a bit more powerful than the Mystras, or perhaps she was less powerful due to some hard-to-measure fluctuations. The divine essence is just one part of it.

Never sleep under the jackfruit tree.

Tales of Moonsea - A Neverwinter Nights 2 Persistent World. Check out our website at http://www.talesofmoonsea.com and our video trailer at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=am304WqOAAo&feature=youtu.be, as well as our thread here at Candlekeep: http://www.forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=12955

My campaign thread: http://www.forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=16447
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Eltheron
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  17:52:08  Show Profile Send Eltheron a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Mapolq

Well, there's a difference between the power a deity has due to its essence and the power it has due to its portfolio. Incidentally, after Mystryl died, didn't the portfolio of Time go away? Time wasn't linked to Mystryl's essence, it was just a portfolio she held, no?

So by the same token, Mystryl and all the Mystras are not powerful just because of their primordial essence, but also because of the portfolio of Magic. So it could be that Mystryl was a bit more powerful than the Mystras, or perhaps she was less powerful due to some hard-to-measure fluctuations. The divine essence is just one part of it.


Well, those are good points - in that power dynamics changed in a rather dynamic way after the ToT, and also about neither Mystra#1 or Mystra#2 technically having the portfolio of Time. On the other hand, where did Time go? If it's Amaunator, where did Time go when Amaunator was gone and Lathander didn't have it?

But I think originally what you were suggesting as a possibility was that Shar or something siphoned off the "negative energy half" of Mystryl and that this could've explained the "change" in Mystra's personality and role. My question would be, then, what changed in Mystra or was "siphoned" away? A portfolio? Some part of Mystryl's more neutral personality?

Or to put it in a different way: what was the "change" in Mystra that needs to be explained by this theory or any other?


"The very best possible post-fourteenth-century Realms lets down those who love the specific, detailed social, political and magical situation, with its thousands of characters, developed over forty years, and want to learn more about it; and those who'd be open to a new one with equal depth, which there just isn't time to re-produce; and those repelled, some past the point of no return, by the bad-taste-and-plausibility gap of things done to the world when its guardianship was less careful."
--Faraer

Edited by - Eltheron on 12 Mar 2014 18:00:48
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Eltheron
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  18:23:23  Show Profile Send Eltheron a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Markus, I see you're editing your older post. But I'm not sure what you've changed and several people already replied to your original version. If you're trying to emphasize something or modify a meaning, it'd be better if you specifically pointed out what you've changed.

Or just reply to the replies you've already gotten on that post rather than changing it, maybe.


"The very best possible post-fourteenth-century Realms lets down those who love the specific, detailed social, political and magical situation, with its thousands of characters, developed over forty years, and want to learn more about it; and those who'd be open to a new one with equal depth, which there just isn't time to re-produce; and those repelled, some past the point of no return, by the bad-taste-and-plausibility gap of things done to the world when its guardianship was less careful."
--Faraer

Edited by - Eltheron on 12 Mar 2014 18:24:38
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  18:31:15  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just made some spelling corrections is all.

quote:
Originally posted by Eltheron

I'm not real sure about this, though. Halaster was certainly doing something interesting with his ritual, but I can't see him as a "key" or even a key player. I really doubt that he will be involved much, other than perhaps someone talking about what he was trying to accomplish with the ritual. I also don't see Halaster as being restored, and certainly not taking the place of Azuth.
Somewehere, there were more details about that ritual, but I can't find the source ATM. It was revealed that Halaster was trying to prevent the Spellplague from happening, and obviously failed.

I checked the info in tGHotR, and it all it mentions is this -
quote:
It soon becomes clear that Halaster destroyed himself while attempting a ritual of tremendous power, and in the moment of his death hurled desperate visions and mysterious compulsions to adventurers and persons of magical power throughout Faerūn.
But I know we had more info then that... anyone? Wasn't there an Undermountain adventure toward the end of 3e?

Regardless, we know Halaster and Larloch were 'at odds' (not enemies, perhaps, maybe more like competitors?), and Halaster was cured of his insanity, and then soon after became obsessed with stopping something he somehow had knowledge of (perhaps through his recent association with Shar?) the only thing I can think of is that when he told Mystra "I am Shar's creature", he had some sort of connection to Shar at some point (which drove him nuts), and that once cured, he had some inkling of Shar's Black Chronology - that he foresaw the same alternate future Shar did, and that she was trying to steer prophesy in that direction.

Shar represents 'bleakness', and thats what was infecting Halaster's mind for a time. The Weave - when it was in-balance (pre-Karsus) - contained equal parts of both 'the light' and 'the dark', either of which in too large a dose could kill you (in much the same way that the old Positive and Negative planes worked). The Weave perfectly balanced those two energies - the power of Selune & Shar, which kept each-other in-check. When either (or both) Halster and Larloch tried to 'distill' one magic out from another, they risked contamination. Note that Heavy magic was probably the pure, distilled portion of the Negative half of the Weave, because it instantly turned Wulgreth into a Lich when it struck him (which reminds me so much of the 'pure evil' from the old Time Bandits movie). We also now know that Shar manipulated Karsus into making his uber-blunder... right after he handled some 'Heavy Magic'.

The only way for Shar to regain her lost power back from the Weave was to turn some of its greatest users into her tools, willingly or no. Now, I don't take Larloch as the 'minion' type - it was probably more along the lines of a partnership. If I know Larloch, he was probably going to attempt to steal all that power right our from under her, at the last moment (much as Doctor Doom had from Galactus during the Secret Wars). And knowing Shar, she probably expected a betrayal, and admired him for it.

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Edited by - Markustay on 12 Mar 2014 22:50:27
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Eltheron
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  18:43:42  Show Profile Send Eltheron a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay

Just made some spelling corrections is all.

quote:
Originally posted by Eltheron

I'm not real sure about this, though. Halaster was certainly doing something interesting with his ritual, but I can't see him as a "key" or even a key player. I really doubt that he will be involved much, other than perhaps someone talking about what he was trying to accomplish with the ritual. I also don't see Halaster as being restored, and certainly not taking the place of Azuth.
Somewehere, there were more details about that ritual, but I can't find the source ATm. It was revealed that Halaster was trying to prevent the Spellplague from happening, and obviously failed.

I checked the info in tGHotR, and it all it mentions is this -
quote:
It soon becomes clear that Halaster destroyed himself while attempting a ritual of tremendous power, and in the moment of his death hurled desperate visions and mysterious compulsions to adventurers and persons of magical power throughout Faerūn.
But I know we had more info then that... anyone? Wasn't there an Undermountain adventure toward the end of 3e?


Expedition to Undermountain, but it's pretty brief.





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Demzer
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  19:27:20  Show Profile Send Demzer a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay
We also now know that Shar manipulated Karsus into making his uber-blunder... right after he handled some 'Heavy Magic'.



Uh? Where is this from?

Interesting conversation btw, i'm keeping out because i strongly disagree on some of the assumptions on Larloch but it's fun seeing where all of you run with them.
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Mapolq
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Brazil
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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  22:02:24  Show Profile Send Mapolq a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Eltheron

Well, those are good points - in that power dynamics changed in a rather dynamic way after the ToT, and also about neither Mystra#1 or Mystra#2 technically having the portfolio of Time. On the other hand, where did Time go? If it's Amaunator, where did Time go when Amaunator was gone and Lathander didn't have it?

But I think originally what you were suggesting as a possibility was that Shar or something siphoned off the "negative energy half" of Mystryl and that this could've explained the "change" in Mystra's personality and role. My question would be, then, what changed in Mystra or was "siphoned" away? A portfolio? Some part of Mystryl's more neutral personality?

Or to put it in a different way: what was the "change" in Mystra that needs to be explained by this theory or any other?




Right.

First, there is the conundrum of Silver Fire, and now Blue Fire... and Spellfire as well, but I don't know what to do with that one yet so I was being crafty and leaving it unmentioned. It seems to sometimes be described as bluish, but I don't think that's consistent or very meaningful? Anyhow, it doesn't satisfy me to know it's all "magic in its pure form, whatever that is". I don't think I have seen any mention of Mystryl employing Silver Fire, or any other kind really (granted, not a lot of material to go by), but Mystra relies on it quite a bit, as if it's somehow become important.

Second, and here I have lots of faults in my Realmslore, so correct me if needed. Mystryl seemed to be a more primal manifestation of magic, while the reborn Mystra started to be much more proactive, as if she had some kind of plan. By the last centuries, she was a guardian of magic, but her most important servants, her Chosen, were largely "good aligned". Mind you, this is not really a conflict of traditional D&D Good and Evil, so we have to step out of that box. Mystra and her Chosen started to care a lot about the spreading and maintenance of magic, that is, with Creation and not Destruction. Now... Mystryl was also concerned with creation in a big way (and I'm leaving out the capital "C" for a reason), but that was because she held the portfolios of creation, knowledge, innovation. She didn't seem to be nearly as concerned with the spread of magic, with its very nature, as it were, as reborn Mystra would become. It's like Mystra knows she ought to care, whereas for Mystryl everything is as it always was.

And, not really "Third", but read Mystryl's description in Netheril: Empire of Magic again. Sure, that book wasn't written by Ed and its style is very different from his, but that particular passage... not so much.

But I will readily admit these are little strands, and that there are major problems with this interpretation. For one, Selūne seems hardly concerned with Creation at all, ever. It's like she's content with a "simpler" role, which doesn't fit the Creation Mythos very much. It could be that she grew to be more distant as the world developed, but that's not a particularly satisfying explanation.

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Edited by - Mapolq on 12 Mar 2014 22:13:14
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The Arcanamach
Master of Realmslore

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Posted - 12 Mar 2014 :  23:07:20  Show Profile Send The Arcanamach a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Don't forget that Ed stated some time ago that Flamsterd was given the task of finding the shards of Halaster's soul...presumably to put him back together.

As for the rest of the conversation...I'm not done reading through it...information overload.

I have a dream that one day, all game worlds will exist as one.
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