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T O P I C    R E V I E W
Gary Dallison Posted - 26 May 2020 : 16:01:22
So i'm going to bite the bullet and read the novels to mine them for lore.

Is anyone interested in me posting the details here so i can spare others the pain of having to read them (and for easy reference later)?
30   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Gary Dallison Posted - 04 Oct 2022 : 11:21:21
The Mage in the Iron Mask (1368 DR)
By Brian Thomsen

Donal Loomis
Donal Loomis was a dwarfish gnome of a man, which is not to say that he claimed any blood lineage to either the dwarves or the gnomes but rather that his overall appearance, unfortunately, seemed to emulate the least favourable attributes of both races. With his bulbous features, stunted stature, and obese waistline, he was easily considered an unsightly wart on the face of humankind. The jagged facial scars that decorated his hairless head, unsightly reminders of the painful removal of tell-tale tattoos, did not help the ugliness of his physical appearance. [Prologue]
Member of the Retreat [Prologue]
when one finds oneself on the wrong side of a revolution, and Szass Tam was one lich who definitely didn't forgive and forget. Donal had had his telltale tattoos painfully burnt off his facial skin, and had applied for sanctuary at the Retreat [Prologue]
Nathor, a fellow conspirator from that ill-fated revolution (against Szass Tam) had also turned up at the steps of the Retreat. Nathor disappeared after three days, and was never heard from again. [Prologue]
Elder of the Retreat [Prologue]
80+ years old [Prologue]
Slain by shadowriders (mercenaries from Thay) in the employ of the Tharchioness when she discovered he rebelled against Szass Tam [Prologue]
First Donal betrayed the Retreat and offered to sell Rassendyll to Dmitra Flas (she offered him amnesty for his crimes against Szass Tam), then he betrayed Dmitra and offered to sell Rassendyll to Selfaril for money. [2]

The Retreat
The Retreat, as the members called it, was originally a place of study, refuge, and retirement for those who wished to devote their lives to the study of mage-craft and other magical arts. Scholarship alone, however, ceased to be enough of a reason for being or means of survival in the dour political climes of the Moonsea region, and the elder wizards who founded the Retreat many years ago decided that it had become necessary to widen their membership to certain other members of society who might help to subsidize their institution through financial endowments, political protection (whether by favours, military aid, or just good old-fashioned blackmail), or diplomatic influence. As a result, the institute of learning and refuge also became a place of sanctuary for political outcasts whose assets or knowledge could benefit their foundation, spies from the south or the west en route to the east or vice versa (Harpers were usually particularly welcome temporary guests whose incurred debts were always paid in a timely and generous manner); or just a convenient and permanent hiding place for offspring born on the wrong side of the blanket by royals or soon to be royals whose legitimate heirs had reason to worry about potential rivals. [Prologue]
As long as the accounts were met, no questions were asked, nor information given out. As a result, numerous members of the peculiar institution who had come to accept their lives of study had no knowledge of their parentage or lineage, and possessed memories solely of their lives within the monastic walls, nor did they desire such information nor opportunities for adventure. Loyola Ignato, one of the Retreat's founders and, according to legend, a mage of some note, had prided himself on his abilities to indoctrinate the young and inexperienced into the ways of life in the monastery. He was known to boast that if you gave him a youth between the ages of two and twenty, the Retreat would have him for life, and many nobles were more than willing to accommodate him. Without exception the Retreat had never lost an initiate to temporal temptations that lie beyond the monastic walls. [Prologue]
Only elders were allowed to venture from the Retreat a half-day journey into Mulmaster to deliver the monthly tithe, as the more youthful interns were prone to distractions that might persuade them to forsake the life of scholarly pursuits [Prologue]
Members stand watch on guard duty (on rotation????) [Prologue]
Elders given title of magister [Prologue]
Inner hall [Prologue]
The shadowriders have orders to kill everyone at the Retreat. Rassendyll is taken prisoner [Prologue]
The Thayan mercenaries captured Donal and slew him with a crystal wand (of Thayan design). Then the Hawks went to the Retreat to pretend to help them against the Thayan mercenaries (whom they had already killed) and slew everyone left at the Retreat, leaving behind the crystal wand to implicate the Thayans [2]
Was under Mulmaster’s protection [5]
Damon of Runyon, elder of the Retreat [6]

Other Lore
Have you gazed upon the Runes of Chaos, beheld the thing which sits upon Thakorsil's Seat, held the Death Moon Orb in your trembling hands, wielded Nyskar's Nightblades, entered the Devouring Portal and walked the Paths of the Doomed, or sat at the left hand of Szass Tam during the Ritual of Twin Burning? [Prologue]
The lark is one of Faerun's most common birds of the morn [Prologue]
Passepout, former sponsored actor and artist of the House of Bernd of Cormyr. Passepout used to be a thief [1,8]
House Bernd, heir is Curtis. Curtis is marrying Shurleen. Maid is Marissa [1]
It is a very serious crime in Cormyr to interfere with the reproductive capabilities of a feline [1]
Ward T.James, resident of Phlan, tours with a group called the S.S.I.-Stupendous Stagecraft Incorporated. They are most famous for their Pools series of plays that set the great classics of Faerun in a mud pit. High drama and mud wrestling all rolled into one. [1]
Rumors of non-Mulan spies in Thay were rampant, and precautions had to be taken.
magically-empowered images of phoenixes in flight, a tattoo of a political appointee in Thay (whose sign is phoenixes in flight, who does he serve????) [2]
Arabellan Brandy [2]
Bowl-headed Greenwood, a bird indigenous to Shadowdale [3]
The call of a bowl headed greenwood bird is used as a signal by Harpers (from the Shadowdale branch????) [3]
Tanyaherst, Sembian merchant vessel, purchases slaves from pressgangs to act as cheap labour. Mulmaster has a spy on board [7]
Seau Raisis, friend of Passepout in Cormyr (is he an actor????), has a dry, flaky, skin problem. Beheaded (was he a traitor????)
Oleigh, cleric in Cormyr
The master traveller, in his research for Volo's Guide to All Things Magical, recalled reading about such masks. If memory served him, he seemed to remember that they usually did more than just hide one's face, but also dampened one's ability to perform magic. Legend had it that in olden days such masks had been used on imprisoned wizards to render them vulnerable to torture and interrogation. [10]
Halruaan ale [10]
On the Road with Crossbow, Hope, and Lamour, a book about a man with a crossbow looking for the meaning of life but instead found love and friends [14]
Knight of the Order of the Hard Day, a warrior order that Honor Fullstaff served with and trains their students from time to time [14]
Ward's Folly, also known as The Pool of Blood, a play in Cormyr with lots of killing [18]

Mulmaster
Also known as the City of Danger [1]
numerous connubial festivals that was celebrated by the thrice-yearly reunion of the High Blade and his bride from the Far East [Prologue]
Sir Melker Rickman, commander/captain of the Hawks. Had an elder brother Jeremy (first born and received all the privileges) who is now dead. Sir Melker was forced to enter the military or the priesthood. When Melker’s father died, Jeremy inherited the estate, Melker (then a sergeant) had Jeremy imprisoned on high treason and executed a week later. Melker was quickly promoted and inherited the estate. Eyepatch. Executed for treason [Prologue,2,3,Epilogue]
The Hawks are the High Blade's own storm troopers. Rumour has it that he regularly dispatches them to do his dirty work throughout the Realms. [Prologue,1]
the prison known as Southroad Keep [1]
Traveler's Cloak Inn, expensive. Dela the barmaid and owner [1]
A permit is required to act. Those buying the permit must pay the theatre tax [1]
Tower of Arcane Might, the guild hall for the Brotherhood of the Cloak. Any mage in the city of fourth level or higher is immediately recruited to their ranks, or else. [1]
Senior Cloak Thurndan Tallwand, succeeded Rathbone after his death [1]
strict rules on magic use [1]
Mason McKern, old and sour faced mage. Same age as Honor Fullstaff. Retired senior member of the Cloaks almost as long as Honor Fullstaff had been blind, living at the Retreat. Friends with Honor Fullstaff despite never having served together. Has a brother mage in Mulmaster who is blind and specialised metallurgy magic, he made the helmet that Rassendyll wears and lives in the dungeons of Southroad Keep in case his skills are needed. Mason served under High Blade Merch, does not like Selfaril much although he is still bound to protect him (he just doesn’t do his dirty work). Younger brother of Loyola Ignato McKern [1,7,9,10,11]
Mulmaster was founded-by various influential merchant groups-in the Year of Fell Wizardry, as a trading fortress way station between the Moonsea, the River Lis, and the Dragon Reach. It managed to not only survive, but thrive during the years of unrest, and eventually, in the Year of Thunder, made a bid for complete domination of the Moonsea, only to be put back in its place by the combined forces of Sembia, Hillsfar, Phlan, Melvaunt, and Zhentil Keep. There was much finger pointing after their failed attempt at expansionism, and out of the anarchy arose the formation of a single seat of power, to rule over the others. This leader was to be called the High Blade, who was to work in conjunction with the other ranking nobles who from that time on were known as the Blades. The first High Blade took power in the Year of the Wandering Wyrm, and quickly assassinated any of the Blades who didn't agree with his way of doing things. From that point on the Blades were nothing more than a puppet ruling council. [1]
High Blade's Study in the Tower of the Wyvern, a private study, a room secret to all but his closest advisors (which did not include his wife, the Tharchioness). Only the Hawk commander and the High Blade know how to use the secret door to access the High Blade’s Study [2]
Slater, valet of the High Blade [2]
Tharchioness's Boudoir in the Tower of the Wyvern [2]
Reid Room in the Tower of the Wyvern, receiving room [2]
Wave and Wink (nicknamed the W&W) and the Smashed Plate, very popular local hotspots [3]
Thayan wizards in service to the Tharchioness are exempt from normal controls by the cloaks [3]
Wattrous (older weasel-like) and Jembahb (younger and taller), members of the Hawks, not known for their discretion. Jembahb was executed for incompetence and Wattrous fled Mulmaster and has a price on his head [3,5,6]
Smagler, easily bribed guard in Southroad Keep [3]
Blough, Hawk [3]
Lieutenant Boston of the City Watch [3]
City Watch man the gates and register those coming in and going out. Also round up drunkards of a night (and throw them in jail presumably????) [3]
Office of the High Blade in the Tower of the Blades [4]
Courtyard between the Tower of the Blades and the Tower of the Wyvern [5]
The harbour has been filled with ships as of late. Several of them are from our allies who have agreed to assist us in the rebuilding of our navy, while others are from certain other interests whose press gangs we have allowed to harvest our detritus in exchange for certain considerations. [6]
Honor Fullstaff, blind former gladiator, 6 ft tall. Lives in a villa along the road between Mulmaster and the Retreat. Has two servants, Hal and Poins. Now works as a swordmaster and tutor. Over 60 years old and still well muscled. His cook is a dwarf named Hotspur. Began his illustrious career in the gladiatorial arenas of Hillsfar where coming in second leaves one with a very short career. No idea who his parents were (they may have died in the arena). Led a slave revolt, instigating the escape of over half of Hillsfar’s gladiators. Hillsfar offered Honor and his gladiators a contract as mercenaries. Eventually the mercenary broke up through attrition etc. Honor then joined the Hawks in Mulmaster and swiftly rose through the ranks to become Captain of the Hawks and the City Watch and Merch’s right hand man. Merch and Honor were closer than brothers. Honor was blinded by Rathbone the leader of the Cloaks at the time. His students have included kings and thieves, and their tuition has varied from debts of gratitude to villas in Cormyr [6,7]
Mischa Tam (relative of Szass Tam????), female advisor to Dmitra Flas. Half sister of Dmitra Flas due to an assignation on her mother’s part. She was neither as potent a magic-wielder or as popular a politician as the First Princess, and she was reminded of it every day of her life, and accepted her fate of never being more than the one who was referred to behind her back as the Second Half-Princess, and the sister of the Tharchioness. Secretly hates Dmitra Flas and is waiting for Szass Tam to choose a new favourite (preferably Mischa) [6,7]
Minister Konoch and Minister Molloch, male advisors to Dmitra Flas [6,7]
Gate of Good Fortune, temple of Tymora [6]
Year of the Bow, Mulmaster’s fleet was destroyed by Zhentil Keep, along with many of the Hawks [7]
Lieutenant Danovich, Hawk, originally trained as an actor. Reposted somewhere far from Mulmaster with very low survival chances [7]
Roche, personal servant (batman) to Captain Rickman [7]
Rathbone was leader of the Cloaks during Merch’s rule as High Blade. He disliked Honor Fullstaff and envied his position as Merch’s right hand man. He arranged an explosion while Honor was supervising the forging and tempering of his own weapon, the explosion blinded Honor (no one was killed). After Honor was blinded the Cloaks became responsible for the High Blade’s security. Rathbone committed suicide (hung himself in the Tower of Arcane Might) after Merch’s death (or was he killed????) [7]
The Villa of Honor Fullstaff is about a quarter days journey (on foot) from Mulmaster). Bardulph, works as a messenger [9,13]
Stiles, an assassin in service to Captain Rickman, one of the best assassins he has at his disposal. Has been contracted to eliminate Wattrous [10]
James, bandit operating outside Mulmaster near the Retreat. Tortured by the Hawks [10]
Warrior’s Arena tavern, favoured haunt of Captain Rickman [11,13]
Lendel, servant in the Thayan embassy, secretly a spy for Captain Rickman. Slain by Captain Rickman [12]
The Company of the Blind, a Cloak Society of old blind men that broker information. Honor Fullstaff uses them [13]
Elijakuk, Chancellor in the Thayan embassy [14]
There are secret tunnels and passages throughout the city, several of which lead directly to the High Blade's private study. Secret tunnels also extend under Southroad Keep [14,16]
Gomar Nabors, guard in the Hawks at the Tower of the Wyvern [15]
Greenstrit, Thayan minister [18]
Necking Tree, a tree with drooping branches to seclude those within [Epilogue]

Merch Voumdolphin
Merch, former High Blade and Selfaril’s father. Merch himself was far from an angel, and the fact that Selfaril was his son was looked upon as just a slight deviation from the normal rules of ascendancy. Patricide wasn't the first time, and probably won't be the last (has a High Blade been murdered by his son before????) [7]
Merch Voumdolphin began life as a gladiator in the Hillsfar arena with Honor. He planned the slave revolt that Honor led. While Honor formed the mercenary band, Merch romanced a certain Mulman aristocrat's daughter. In no time they were married, and Merch had safely slept his way up the ladder of Mulman high society. There was only one small problem: unbeknownst to him, he had already fathered two sons from a slave girl he had lain with during off hours at the arena, and these offspring were still imprisoned back in Hillsfar.Honor first found out about these two infants that had just been born on the wrong side of the blanket, and he hastened to Mulmaster to alert Merch. Needless to say, he was horrified, torn by his duty to his newly-acquired wife-who was already pregnant-and the illegitimate spawn of his loins. Mason McKern and his brother had pledged their service to the head of the family (which Merch had married into) in return for money to be given to Loyola Ignato (Loyola Ignato McKern) so he could establish the Retreat [11]
Merch’s wife asked the two mage McKern brothers to forge an enchanted weapon that would imbue its bearer with great facility and lethal mastery of the bladed arts. The brothers complied, forging a weapon whose blade was combined from the melted-down blades of several of Mulmaster's veteran swordsmen, including that of the bride's father, whose title of Blade bespoke more of his own experience with one than such a title conveys today. When Merch took the blade in hand, he became a swordmaster the likes of which Mulmaster had never seen. Together with his old comrade-in-arms, Honor Fullstaff, he returned to Hillsfar, raided the slave compound, and rescued his infant sons, who at the time were still less than two months old. Triumphantly, he and his comrade returned with the babes in hand to a prearranged spot where they could meet up with his bride and her trusted confidant. [11]
Merch’s wife miscarried so they chose one of his illegitimate sons to replace his newly dead so. The other illegitimate son went to the Retreat but the man carrying Rassendyll was slain and Rassendyll was believed taken by bandits (Loyola intended to keep Rassendyll as secret to use as leverage later but died without anyone knowing about his secret ward) [11]


Rassendyll
Young mage in training at the Retreat. Kidnapped by mercenaries and delivered to Mulmaster where he was forged into a head case that suppresses magic use [Prologue]

Dmitra Flas
Dmitra Flas also known as the First Princess of Thay, and the Tharchioness of Eltabbar, or just the Tharchioness for short. It was a major diplomatic coup for both Mulmaster and Thay. She spends most of her time back in Eltabbar, and he's been known to continue to play the rogue with the wandering eye despite their matrimonial vows. She visits here three times a year. I believe she just arrived yesterday for her most recent visit. Both sides claim that they were wedded due to their mutual respect and love for each other, but I wonder. [1]
devastating earthquake in Eltabbar a few months back. Dmitra Flas was overseeing the rebuilding when she received word from Donal Loomis about Rassendyll. Her ambassador suggested she could use Rassendyll to escape from her marriage to Selpharil [2]
Ambassador Vitriole of Thay (in service to Dmitra Flass and remained in Mulmaster) executed by Dmitra Flas for failing her and losing Donal [2]
Szass Tam had explained the necessity of her courtship and marriage to the foul westerner as the first step toward an active Thayan presence in the Moonsea area. The powerful lich lord would then be able to extend his influence farther southward to the Dalelands, while exerting further pressures on the other tharches toward an ultimate goal of the unification of all of Thay under his eternal rule. She had been more than willing to assist him in this ultimate goal, even if it meant subjecting herself to the bondage of matrimony. Unfortunately, both of them had underestimated the equally acquisitive ambitions of the High Blade, who saw Mulmaster's Tower of the Wyvern as the jumping-off point for his own expansion of power and authority both south and eastward, power which he had no intention of sharing with his bride, or the real power behind her throne. [2]
Dmitra Flas was legendary in her cruelty, and the execution of Vitriole was only the most recent of her acts of intolerance toward what she considered to be traitorous incompetence. Anything that hindered Szass Tam's ultimate plans was considered to be treasonous within the tharch of Eltabbar, and treason was always punishable by death. [2]
Szass Tam wanted an alliance between Eltabbar and Mulmaster (why????). Dmitra Flas suggested that the seduction was metamorphosed into a diplomatic liaison cum marriage that would form an alliance between Eltabbar and Mulmaster. Szass Tam agreed it was felt that such an official alliance would be more advantageous.
Joechairo Lawre, replacement ambassador for Vitriole. Only took the position to get away from the politics in Thay. Executed for attacking the High Blade (he actually killed Selfaril) [Epilogue]



Southroad Keep
Hoffman, an old dwarf with a long white beard, from the Seventh Dwarven Abbey. Been in the dungeons a long time (before 1357 DR). Senior abbot and protector of the legendary Seal of Robert. The Seventh Dwarven Abbey was attacked by Zhent agents, and I alone survived. Once I had ascertained the safety of the Seal, I came to Mulmaster in search of help. The powers that be claimed I was a spy, threw me in the dungeon, and forgot about me. [2,3]
When a person dies in the keep, their body is placed in a sack with a weight and dropped down the same drain that the garbage goes. It leads to an underground canal that eventually empties out into the Moonsea. The dead are bagged and weighted before the dinner service, and then collected on the same trip they retrieve the plates. I've seen it happen many times over, and it runs like clockwork. You can tell when it happens. The guards ring a bell to signal that someone has to bring down a sack and a weight. [4]
Kupfer, former resident of Southroad Keep, a firbolg. Tortured to death by a bored guard [4]
Office of the Captain of the Hawks in Southroad Keep [7]
Dwight Wrenfield, custodian of Southroad Keep [15]

Chesslyn Onaubra
Chesslyn Onaubra, Harper. [4]
Has a longsword that can be thrown 50 feet (magic????) [4]
Posing as a guard at the Gate of Good Fortune [6]
Has been operating as a Harper Agent in Mulmaster for quite some time. Has an amulet of non-detection to avoid the Cloaks magics [6]
Only the elders of the Retreat were allowed to come to Mulmaster, and then only on a rotating basis as the need arose. One of the elders, Damon of Runyon, would stop by the temple on his visit and leave a series of bets with very specific instructions. When his winnings reached a certain point, it was my place to bring a portion of the kitty to him, and, for a tidy fee, to bring out new betting instructions. He was pretty lucky, at least up until now. [6]
Taught by Honor Fullstaff [7]

Selfaril
The current High Blade is a fellow by the name of Selfaril Voumdolphin, who succeeded his father into the job after assassinating him. That was back in the Year of the Spear. He did recently marry though, to an equally powerful young lady by the name of Dmitra Flas. [1]
Dressed in silken robes with fur trim, and around his neck was a pendant of a blood-encrusted dagger. The blood was made up of red gemstones. [4]
Slain by Thayan ambassador. His body was disposed of secretly [18]

Moonsea
Lighthouse along the shore near Mulmaster with a nearby barracks housing 36 soldiers [7]
Gary Dallison Posted - 02 Oct 2022 : 21:50:12
Mage in the Iron Mask.

The phonetic names of real world analogues is annoying but i'm guessing they are just copying another well known realms novelist.

It turns out that Szass Tam wanted an alliance between Mulmaster and Thay. Dmitra Flas suggested a marriage alliance.

The question on my mind is why. Mulmaster is soooo far away as to make any such alliance almost pointless.

Is there something in Mulmaster he wants that he cannot obtain without subverting the Cloaks.
Gary Dallison Posted - 28 Sep 2022 : 13:37:14
That was such an obvious answer I cant believe I missed it.

Cheers George

Can we add the full obarskyr family tree to the release the lore hashtag
George Krashos Posted - 27 Sep 2022 : 16:36:47
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison

It would have to be an item.

Jorunhast killed Salember and fled into exile immediately so there would be no opportunity to bestow a magical mantle upon the next king.

I think it is the cricket, and I think I've got a link with thauglor.

What if Iliphars instructions to protect and serve the crown to baerauble were quite literal.
When he gave it to faerlthann he could have attuned it to obarskyr blood. Then whoever wears the crown (even just once) gains the benefit of that link to the weave.

I'm betting the crown of iliphar is part of the coronation ceremony.





As a complete aside. Looked at the obarskyr family tree.

Gorauna killed off the children of her brothers and sister so that her own spawn could rule (and so she could control them) and then they all die out.

Then the line begins again with the grandnieces and grandnephews of gorauna. The only problem is that she killed all the ones we know of.

Which means, either her father had a secret bastard whose descendants became kings and queens (it doesnt say half grand nieces and half grand nephews though. Or someone (the mage royal) figured out what gorauna was doing and his away one of her niece / nephews when she though she killed it, or one of her unmarried brothers had a bastard and his descendants were used.

It's odd that it doesnt detail the parentage if gorauna grand nieces and grand nephews.



The "succession"-style lineage doesn't lend itself to detailing siblings who never ruled. King Keldroun, Gorauna's dad, had a lot of children. The boys, Berost, Gorann and Ulbaeram, all ruled. The daughters provided young Obarskyr nephews/nieces and eventually great-nephews/nieces who were placed on the throne or used as breeding stock. They are all accounted for, never fear.

-- George Krashos
sleyvas Posted - 25 Sep 2022 : 16:34:14
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison


It seems like some magic infuses the Obarskyr bloodline to make them longlived and healthy beyond normal humans. Some have speculated something about the weave in Cormyr bestows that and it did the same for Thauglor and Iliphar.



I personally suspect that there's something like the Athora going on, in Cormyr, and that something about the ritual changing of rulership passes on a connection of some sort to that object. Again, the whole mantle thing -- with the responsibility of rulership (or of aiding the crown) comes certain magical benefits that are drawn from this MacGuffin. (I suspect the well-known Obarskyr love of nookie may be a side-effect of this; how better to insure there's an Obarskyr around to assume that mantle?)

I would suspect the Crystal Grot has some connection to this MacGuffin, as well.



That idea reminds me of the whole Deryni series of novels in which each king is awakened to certain powers that mimic Deryni powers and even exceeds them.... making one wonder if their powers are just "psionic" powers or if there is actually something to royal blood. I do like the idea of royalty getting awakened as well, though we see that more in the way of the godkings of Mulhorand.... and that's probably also a good way to portray THEM as well.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 24 Sep 2022 : 15:36:25
Could be. Ansrivarr remains a candidate to me, though... I just read this bit, from page 29 of Dragon 407:

"Carried by Mondar Bleth from Old Impiltur when he and his family arrived in what would later become Suzail, this ancient, battered blade is older than the realm. Taken up by Faerlthann First-King when Mondar was slain by the elves who then ruled Cormyr (though every tale told of the slaying blames the attack on orcs), Ansrivarr was the sword worn by Faerlthann and all his sons during their reigns. It was later replaced by finer steel blades crafted to each monarch’s taste in successive generations, becoming little more than an object of ceremony. For generations, the only use for Ansrivarr has been in the coronation of Cormyr’s kings.

Unknown to the Obarskyr kings, Baerauble Etharr and the elves of Iliphar’s court (more specifically, Baerauble’s beloved, Alea Dahast) wove countless protective enchantments into the blade, making it nigh invulnerable. Due to its being the sword that represents the kingdom, tale upon tale connects the fate of the realm to that of the blade, and every precaution was taken in those earliest days to prevent dire fates from coming to pass for the sword and the kingdom."

I'll be the first to admit this isn't conclusive proof of anything, but it does support my theory.
Gary Dallison Posted - 24 Sep 2022 : 14:49:36
It would have to be an item.

Jorunhast killed Salember and fled into exile immediately so there would be no opportunity to bestow a magical mantle upon the next king.

I think it is the cricket, and I think I've got a link with thauglor.

What if Iliphars instructions to protect and serve the crown to baerauble were quite literal.
When he gave it to faerlthann he could have attuned it to obarskyr blood. Then whoever wears the crown (even just once) gains the benefit of that link to the weave.

I'm betting the crown of iliphar is part of the coronation ceremony.





As a complete aside. Looked at the obarskyr family tree.

Gorauna killed off the children of her brothers and sister so that her own spawn could rule (and so she could control them) and then they all die out.

Then the line begins again with the grandnieces and grandnephews of gorauna. The only problem is that she killed all the ones we know of.

Which means, either her father had a secret bastard whose descendants became kings and queens (it doesnt say half grand nieces and half grand nephews though. Or someone (the mage royal) figured out what gorauna was doing and his away one of her niece / nephews when she though she killed it, or one of her unmarried brothers had a bastard and his descendants were used.

It's odd that it doesnt detail the parentage if gorauna grand nieces and grand nephews.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 24 Sep 2022 : 14:39:47
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison

The problem is finding a link between thauglor, iliphar, and all the obarskyrs.

Thauglor is unlikely to have taught the elves how to do whatever he did to make him so immense and still active beyond normal dragon proportions.

Iliphar is equally unlikely to have taught baerauble. While he may have respected the man as a capable human, he was still a human, and elven prejudice runs strong.

Then the mage royals would have to bestow it upon every obarskyr.

Unless there is something linking them all together.

Not sure about the crystal grot. I dont know if thauglor or iliphar had any connection to it.



There doesn't have to be a link between Thauglor, Iliphar, and the Obarskyrs. And none of them have to be connected to the Crystal Grot.

Thauglor and Iliphar both could have learned of this thing independently, and learned how to take advantage of it -- and not necessarily in the same fashion.

Later, Iliphar devised a way to tap into it, and to pass on that connection. It could be through an object that's remained in Obarskyr hands, like Iliphar's Circlet or Ansrivarr. Or it could be the mantle I've referred to, and that part of a ruler taking the throne involves a magic ritual that bestows the mantle on them.

The Crystal Grot would be another effect of this thing. It may even be this MacGuffin, though I'm more inclined to think the MacGuffin is close to the Crystal Grot and the sapphire production is another effect of the MacGuffin's power.
Gary Dallison Posted - 24 Sep 2022 : 09:41:23
The problem is finding a link between thauglor, iliphar, and all the obarskyrs.

Thauglor is unlikely to have taught the elves how to do whatever he did to make him so immense and still active beyond normal dragon proportions.

Iliphar is equally unlikely to have taught baerauble. While he may have respected the man as a capable human, he was still a human, and elven prejudice runs strong.

Then the mage royals would have to bestow it upon every obarskyr.

Unless there is something linking them all together.

Not sure about the crystal grot. I dont know if thauglor or iliphar had any connection to it.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 22:13:36
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison


It seems like some magic infuses the Obarskyr bloodline to make them longlived and healthy beyond normal humans. Some have speculated something about the weave in Cormyr bestows that and it did the same for Thauglor and Iliphar.



I personally suspect that there's something like the Athora going on, in Cormyr, and that something about the ritual changing of rulership passes on a connection of some sort to that object. Again, the whole mantle thing -- with the responsibility of rulership (or of aiding the crown) comes certain magical benefits that are drawn from this MacGuffin. (I suspect the well-known Obarskyr love of nookie may be a side-effect of this; how better to insure there's an Obarskyr around to assume that mantle?)

I would suspect the Crystal Grot has some connection to this MacGuffin, as well.
Gary Dallison Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 21:31:32
My favourite novel so far.

I thought Silver Shadows had a lot of lore in it. This novel has so much historical lore in it makes my brain hurt, and plenty of opportunities for playing detective.

There did get a point where there were it became too difficult to track who was part of what plot, but that just makes it realistic.

The bit that lost me, was where Emthrara was impersonating some blue mask lady in a similar location to Brantarra and i got confused between the two and actually thought Emthrara was Lady Brantarra, and it was really confusing when the Harper turned up and stabbed the nobles trying to assassinate Tanalasta because i thought she had just sent them to kill her (although then i figure she was just using that to get closer to the princess).

I really wish Othorion Keove was mentioned elsewhere, he seemed interesting.

I loved the appearance of the Rayburtons and the Wyvernspur changing into a wyvern.

It seems like some magic infuses the Obarskyr bloodline to make them longlived and healthy beyond normal humans. Some have speculated something about the weave in Cormyr bestows that and it did the same for Thauglor and Iliphar.

Loads of noble houses, Arabel rebelled more times than i can count, Marsember was ruined just as many times, and most of the history in the sourcebooks is a lie of sorts.

I do wonder if Lady Brantarra is still alive, why did she try to assassinate Azoun in the first place. Did she help Gondegal escape Arabel. What happened to her son (also Azoun's son).
Gary Dallison Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 21:16:12
1369 DR
Cormyr
The king of all Cormyr raised the bright silver hunting horn [1]
Thundersword [1]
Baron Thomdor of Arabel, Warden of the Eastern Marches and Royal Right Hand to King Azoun IV of Cormyr, a massive man even without his protruding stomach. His shoulders were as broad and as muscled as the withers of many a stallion. He was cousin to the king. Brother of Duke Bhereu. About same age as King Azoun. Lives at High Horn. Grey-blue eyes [1,11]
Duke Bhereu, the king's other cousin, bald head. Lord High Marshal of Cormyr. Brother of Baron Thomdor. About same age as King Azoun. Lives at Arabel. Died in the royal palace of Suzail in Satharwood Hall after the attack by the golden bull and could not be raised from the dead. Worshipper of Tempus [1,3,11]
The Ghost Stag of the King’s Forest has eluded hunting parties for generations. Chosen prey of the King of Cormyr [1]
Aunadar Bleth, Lord Bleth the Younger, young man, courteous without being unctuous. Respectful without overmuch grovelling. Has book-learning enough in his head to be interesting and enough wits not to show it off all at once. Filfaeril approves. Tanalasta likes him. Potential suitor for Crown Princess Tanalasta . boyish charm and gallant looks leavened with a serious, almost bookish demeanour. The youth wore dark ebon leathers trimmed with gold, accented by a short golden riding cape. It was rather sombre wear. [1,3]
Warden Truesilver [1]
Bald Jawn [1]
The Obarskyr bloodline keeps Azoun young just as magic keeps old Vangey alive. As the royal cousins, we'll always be in Azoun's shadow, growing old while his youth and vigor rides on. [1]
Martin Frayault Illance, the most untrustworthy young noble in the kingdom. You know after Tanalasta rejected his entreaties, he got on his horse and rode hard and straight for Alusair? Tanalasta told Alusair all about him and Alusiar dislocated his shoulder. Martin told everyone he was injured in a barroom brawl (partly true). teeth like a werewolf-big incisors, the size of my thumb. [1]
Hunting accidents (nobility and royalty) plagued the realm in the bad old days when Salember was regent. [1]
When Azoun returned from Thesk and his triumph against the Tuigan horde. Every beacon tower was alight with bonfires that night, their red, leaping glow outshining the stars themselves. [1]
Baron Thomdor and Duke Bhereu. The two pillars who held up the realm under the king? They had been called that, Bhereu and he, and as his brother duke had said, they were always to remain in the shadows. [1]
An abraxus, a magical creation similar to a golem or automaton. The creature was golden and bull-shaped, but its mirror-polished hide was covered with sinuous overlaid scales, much like a lizard's. As it surged forward, sunlight danced on its scales, reflecting the light scattershot. Its forward-swept horns were impossibly long and curved so that their tips were mere inches from its faceted amber eyes. Steam billowed from its flaring nostrils and fang-ridged maw as it roared, deep and triumphant. An enchanted machine, it clanked and squeaked as it moved. The steam from the bull's maw wreathed its face, a bitter, acrid odour, like burnt oranges, the smell was strong and pungent, seeming somehow oily – poison gas. Its blood a thick purple black fluid. The effects of the poison gas made their skin translucent and seemed to be melting. Their eyes were opened wide but clouded, staring at nothing through milky orbs, then they thrashed around, vomited black bile and blood and then died. May have been in operation for some time (internally some pieces are worn). Requires the life force of a man or beast to power it. Dimswart discerned the breath weapon carries a venom. The venom spreads a blood disease resistant to conventional magic. That is why my spell had no effect on the late duke. This magic-resistant blood disease in the venom eats at internal organs and destroys the body from within! And once the body is slain, the resistant nature of the disease prevents any restoration of the victim! [1,3,5]
Royal Chirurgeons in Suzail [1]
royal guards in white and purple [1]
priests of Tymora in their blue and silver [1]
war wizards in their violet robes [1]
High Priest Manarech Eskwuin of Tymora [3]
Gwennath of Tymora, lord wizard, sometimes called the Bishop of the Black Blades Adventurers, an adventuress, a young bishop of Tymora, bedecked in sapphire-shaded robes, whose flaxen hair was wrapped in a severe bun. [3]
Loremaster Thaun Khelbor of Deneir (high priest of Deneir????), Khelbor was a balding man with patches of thick grey hair above his ears. He usually looked kindly and slightly comical. Has a tall rune-graven staff of darkest ebony, and small lightning bolts crackled around the staff's tip. The oldest and most gentle of the senior priests of Cormyr [3,5]
roast sarn fowl, served in the royal palace of Suzail [3]
anathlace (handkerchief????) [3]
Augrathar Buruin, High Huntmaster of Vaunted Malar for all Cormyr, wasn't used to answering any summons that did not come from the crown itself. A fur cloaked priest, many dangling claws on the pelts he wore [5]
roast mountain bustard [5]
Aldeth Ironsar, Faithful Hammer of Tyr [5]
Junstal Halarn, ranking Visiting Songmaster at Suzail's shrine to Milil [5]
Erdreth Halansalim, a gaunt, no-nonsense senior war wizard. Referred to as Sir Wizard Halansalim [5]
The decree of Garmos Saernclaws, one of the most respected servants of the lord of beasts-a holy decree that still applies to all priests of Malar, as it has for nigh a thousand years: 'The Hunt must be clean. If disease or affliction is visited on hunters by a beast, clergy of Malar must do all they can to root out and exterminate the taint, that bloodlines and beasts in the wild remain always strong. Part of the Gospels of Saernclaws [5]
Laspeera Inthre, warden of the war wizards, deputy in the command of the War Wizards. Still beautiful, she was beginning to show her years of strain in service to Cormyr. Lines flanked her pursed mouth, and a tiny pair of exquisitely crafted clear crystal spectacles, held aloft by magic. Vangerdahast had met very few mages who could concentrate on as many things at once as this one. [5]
The Laughing Lass, a Suzailan establishment that often transformed itself from tavern into festhall when the nights grew warm [5]
Emthrara Undril. Buxom, beautiful woman, long, honey-hued hair, Vangerdahast believes he saw her dancing at the Laughing Lass. Harper. Once fought, disabled, and then taken apart a giant spider of metal, called by some a 'clockwork horror. [5]
the Bleths have always been strong on old history and bearing grudges until full-fledged feuds are born [5]
Darlutheene Ambershields, born to a family of longtime palace servants. Her gown of royal blue musterdelvys was alive with cut gems-glass, a jeweler would have said at a glance-that glistened like tears, and her formidable bodice was a masterwork of upswept filigree adorned with peacock plumes. The red silk of a fitted chemise flared through her slashed and puffed sleeves, and in half a dozen daring cutouts upon her breast and belly. Huge rings flashed and glistened on every finger as she waved expressive hands, and a small silver ship was under full sail across the raised billows of her blonde hair. [9]
Blaerla Roaringhorn, brown eyes [9]
Taldeth Truesilver, young nobleman [9]
Hundilavatar Huntsilver, young nobleman [9]
Roaringhorns did not think well of the Bleths as a matter of principle. The reasons went back several centuries, and by now the particulars were quite forgotten, but were thought to have been very good at the time. [9]
Spires of the Morning, temple in Eveningstar [9]
Only one of Obarskyr blood can wear the crown, a married queen or king gets the title but never the throne [9]
Hireswords hired in Marsember [9]
Blundebel Eldroon, from the minor so-called nobility of Marsember. A widely praised buffoon [11]
In the early hours of this morning, someone unleashed a flight of flying daggers and over a dozen helmed horrors into the temple of Lathander where you were supposedly staying. They made straight for the private apartments given over to the war wizardess posing as you, my queen, and took the lives of several underpriests and all of the openly posted Purple Dragon garrison. A full sword of additional knights-veterans ennobled by the king, not drawn from the established noble families of the realm-were stationed in the private apartments and did their utmost to protect the lady they thought was their queen. Four gave their lives, the others are all of the opinion that the attacking constructs they fought, and were forced to destroy in order to prevail, were directed by someone able to observe the fray at all times. [11]
Ondrin Dracohorn. In fewer than thirty winters, he'd bought his way from obscurity to prominence among the eastern nobles. Not a tenday passed that Ondrin Dracohorn didn't-quietly, mind you-buy this farm or that warehouse with the coins that poured into his lap, it seemed, from his busy fleets based in Marsember and Saerloon. There were the usual whispers of smuggling, piracy, slaving, and running provisions out to the Pirate Isles, and in truth, it was hard to think of any honest shipping bringing quite so many coins. But on the other hand, it was hard to think of Ondrin Dracohorn as a competent slaver. Or pirate, or just about anything else. His short stature, ordinary looks, and pale, watery blue eyes didn't invite men to do business with him or maids to go to revels with him, but he seemed to suffer no shortage of either. Perhaps, Vangerdahast conjectured, the prevalence of folk greedy for power and easy money explained it. Ondrin was as exultant as a small boy to be "in the know" and at the heart of deals and important events, but he seemed not to see that he stood outside most real intrigues in the court of Suzail, because-as everyone knew-he was one of the biggest loose tongues in the kingdom. Something in his inner being compelled him to tell secrets to just about everyone he met. Ondrin liked to drink-he was fumbling with a belt flask now-and watch dancing girls, and impress folk with his wealth. He dressed in the height of fashion. Right now he was wearing a violent flame-orange cross-sash secured with a metal brooch as large a man's face. The brooch depicted a two-headed serpent transfixed on three swords, but the sash clashed horribly with the blood-purple ornamental half-cloak he'd clipped to it. [13]
Glarasteer Rhauligan, dealer in turret tops and spires, stone and wood both-you order 'em, and we'll build 'em-fast and cheap, and they won't fall down. Neatly bearded trader with a wintry brow. May also be a Harper agent or spy for Vangerdahast [15]
Dauneth Marliir of the Marliir’s of Arabel, young nobleman. Probably one of the richest young men in all Cormyr right now. Of noble Marsembian blood, here to ingratiate himself at court. [15]
red lantern estate (the informal name for the brothel area of Suzail????) [15]
The Marliirs, originally from Marsember, had fought against Dhalmass at Marsember, had been part of the Redlance Rising, had made the mistake of backing the regent Salember, and had gotten into more sordid troubles with the Keepers of the Royal Rolls over taxes since. [15]
Braundlae's Best, Braundlae runs a tavern beneath the Roving Dragon on the Promenade, friends with Glarasteer Rhauligan [15]
eels in mint-and-lime hot sauce [15]
Roving Dragon. The Roving Dragon, as Rhauligan had informed Dauneth earlier, was currently the most popular bun-and-ale for working Suzailans to stop in at, once a day or so. For years, it had seemed there was no room left on the Promenade for a relaxed, reasonably priced establishment that could serve food quickly, where people could sit at tables and talk-gossip, business, court politics, or whatever. aladarea Ithbeck had changed all that. Newly arrived from Chessenta a season ago, she saw the lack of the sort of place she liked to eat at, its windows overlooking somewhere busy and important, and saw something much brighter: If one rented out the upper floor apartments of a row of shops, and then joined them into one long series of private little rooms by knocking doorways through the connecting walls, one suddenly had a large new dining hall right on the Promenade. Add a few very exclusive guest apartments for visiting nobles or rich merchants, make peace with a tavern or two by letting them take the lion's share of the low-bottle drinking trade and in return getting their stairs to serve as entrances, make sure that the food was simple and good-and the Roving Dragon was a sure success. It was seldom, even in the slow midmorning and waning noon hour periods, that the rooms with the best views had fewer than a dozen patrons lazily sipping at cider and making meat tarts or soup last as long as they could. There were a dozen in the Snout Room-the sunny chamber at the east end of the Dragon, with its view of the royal gardens past the end of the sprawling court buildings-right now. [15]
Black Bottom, ale with a rough-edged, smoky taste, but it was good [15]
Doomtongue, another way of saying pessimist [15]
Salember the Serpent [15]
Tessara, now company-for-hire but once a pirate on the sea that roils past the very docks of Suzail. Has a slim, black-scabbarded longsword [15]
Ithkur Onszibar, an independent long-haul caravan merchant and caravan master from Amn hoping to find a business partner in Suzail to anchor the eastern end of his trade route. [15]
Gormon Turlstars, grim merchant and a dealer in blades and fine-tempered tools from Impiltur [15]
Athalon Darvae, a textiles dealer from Saerloon who'd been thinking of moving to Suzail but was now having second thoughts [15]
Stories about the suit of armor that can heal and purify the man who sleeps in it and the spells that can grow new kings from a few pieces of the flesh of old ones. [15]
Iron statues that walk. The Cursed Crowns. The meeting room of the Sword Heralds. Lost Wyvern of Menacha [15]
I, Embryn Crownsilver, being mindful of what I do, solemnly pledge my honor, my blade, and the arm that wields it to support you as Regent of Cormyr. I will fight to bring about the downfall of the decadent Obarskyrs, who have ruled far too long. [17]
Embryn Crownsilver carries a jewelled blade [17]
to many, in Suzail especially, the word 'regent' was synonymous with 'tyrant.' Or one could just say, 'Salember.' [17]
Sardyn Wintersun, head of House Wintersun [17]
Narbreth Skatterhawk, head of House Skatterhawk [17]
the Skatterhawks and Wintersuns, were minor nobility and country nobles to boot, and it would be ungracious to offend one of the more established city families.
Redstone Castle, home to Giogi and Cat Wyvernspur. Protected by magical wards set by Cat Wyvernspur. [17]
Vangerdahast is creating a false plot to install himself as regent. Many nobles have joined it. [17]
With both the royal cousins dead or nearly so, no one but a war wizard could comfortably order about a noble of the realm without unpleasantness. War wizards could, however, because they were experts at unpleasantness. [19]
Kurthryn Shandarn, war wizard. Kurthryn outranked Huldyl [19]
Huldyl Rauthur, war wizard. He was a short, stout man whose temples were almost always beaded with sweat, but he was a better crafter of new spells than Kurthryn, [19]
war wizards were funny that way, a lot of enforced teaching and learning of humility went on, and there were still a lot of covert tests of loyalty. Those who failed such things usually simply vanished. [19]
Imblaskos and Durndurve, war wizards, were dice-and-cards men who played Wheel-of-Spells and Chase the Dragon [19]
Galados, an earnest young war wizard from the Wyvernwater shores, confronted Vangerdahast about his attempt at being regent. He has not been seen since [19]
Commoners will never trust magic, because they think of it as something their nasty neighbour would use against them if he could, and they're always afraid the lot of us are as bad as their nasty neighbour. And with respected bards reminding them from time to time of how High Magess Amedahast died all those years ago battling the first war wizards, who can blame them [19]
Baron Thomdor died [19]
The Royal Magician's eyebrows rose. "Impressive shielding spells," he said, watching the three hired mages at work. Two were Calishites, whose sash symbols showed that they were both Exalted Masters in at least two schools of sorcery and the third was a Nimbran. By the looks of the rippling prismatic domes and spell-stop fields they were weaving around the room, any two of them could probably defeat him in a battle of spells. The house of Cormaeril spared no expense in seeing to the safety of its own… or in attempts to impress their Lord High Wizard. [21]
dragondew wine [21]
Gaspar Cormaeril, cold eyed young noble. Agrees to join Vangerdahast’s regency if he agrees to a council formed of a select group of noble families. Intends to have Ohlmer Cormaeril and Sorgar Illance assassinated at the newly opened Cormaeril Club dining hall. His soul was used to reactivate the Abraxus [21,33]
noble families of Bleth, Cormaeril, Crownsilver, Dauntinghorn, Emmarask, Hawklin, Huntcrown, Huntsilver, Illance, Rowanmantle, and Truesilver [21]
House Illance, chief among the current enemies of House Cormaeril [21]
Ohlmer Cormaeril was an outwardly respectable patriarch of House Cormaeril, given to kidnappings within the realm for the purposes of slavery illicit smuggling dealings with pirates, and the mistreatment of young female slaves who came within his reach. [21]
Sorgar Illance was a cruel ex-adventurer, now balding and bitter as well as cynical and cultured, who'd risen to become head of House Illance, a position that had not slowed his compulsive thefts and love of slaying men in brawls. [21]
Cormaeril Club dining hall. [21]
Elixir du Vole, ruby hued wine [23]
Lareth Gulur, Purple Dragon sword captain, veteran of the Tuigan War [23]
Ensibal Threen, mild mannered war wizard [23]
Ammanadas Silversword, noble of House Silversword, rather chubby, with long blond hair and a wispy mustache of the same hue-gods. Murdered a war wizard [23]
Hathlan, senior officer of the Purple Dragons [23]
Firedrake, alcoholic beverage [23]
The bearer of this note is Dauneth Marliir, of noble blood and on a mission of the greatest importance to the crown. If he would see Cormyr's future as bright as winter stars above the Stonelands, he will meet the azure-masked one in the Snout Room of the Roving Dragon at the lighting of the evening candles. Let him pass, in the name of Alusair." Underneath that was a little mark, or personal rune, that looked like a three-petaled red flower, or perhaps a stylized crown. [23]
Urgan's Best Boots, down a short and nameless side street. In the cellar is a tunnel that connects to the under court cellars of the Noble Court [23]
Ohlmer Cormaeril and Sorgar Illance? Both old family patriarchs were found dead in their beds, and on the very same morning [25]
a glass of smoking blue wine, a rare and expensive import from a very distant place [25]
Tuthtar and Elios, servants of Gaspar Cormaeril [25]
Gaspar Cormaeril had Ohlmer Cormaeril and Sorgar Illance assassinated, then had his servant Tuthtar assassinated because he knew about it, and had his mistress assassinated as well [25]
Albaerin Dauntinghorn, old noble, had a remarkable skill for seeing clearly through dishonesty, deliberately obtuse courtly phrases, and misleading impressions. [27]
The nascent factions seeking to remake Cormyr had their respective bits between their teeth and were starting to pull on the realm trapped between them. The image of Cormyr as the helpless victim being torn apart between four horses was all too painfully accurate just now. [27]
Faern and Dlothtar Bleth, older brothers of Aunadar Bleth [27]
Ensrin Emmarask, siding with Brantarra. Given a ruby [27]
Warpriests of Justice, priests of Tyr [27]
Marshal of the Realm, title (formerly held by Duke Bhereu????) [27]
the many King Azoun has fathered, or is rumoured to have fathered. Yes, they are of Obarskyr blood and stand in precedence ranked by senior birthdate, behind all of the pure House of Obarskyr. If I, the sages, the wizardess Laspeera, and the major priests of the realm agreed to by us and the High Heralds we shall call in-if such a determination ever becomes necessary, and not before then-can all agree on the lineage of each bastard candidate [27]
Drink from Westgate these days, and they always make things too salty so they can water down the stuff, because folk are driven to drink more of it [27]
silver disks, symbols of the goddess Tymora [29]
along the Promenade toward Eastgate. [29]
westward before the gate and head back into the Nobles' Quarter on the pleasant hedge-lined street that crossed Lake Azoun by that beautiful arched bridge… the ornamental wall that separated the holy ground of Deneir from the meadows of the rich merchants next door, down to the edge of the lake, the last sculpted stone book, spread open forever on its wall-top pedestal [29]
Wyvernspur House in the Nobles’ Quarter [29]
Wyvernspur House seemed to have no guards and to be darkest on the lake side. The imposing edifice of the Cormaerils across the street, however, seemed to bristle with watchful guards [29]
Ensrin Emmarask, a Dauntinghorn, a Creth, an Illance, and Red Belorgan (known for being violent and murderous) attempted to kill Tanalasta on the orders of Brantarra. They were slain by Gwennath, Emthrara and Tanalasta. [29]
Everyone from the Huntcrowns to the Yellanders wants the council. Even the Illances have set aside their old feud with the Cormaerils to be in on this and upstart houses such as the Flintfeathers are pushing the council as their way of gaining respect among the 'heavy houses.' They all-even the three socalled royal houses-see it as a way out from under the tyranny of the Obarskyrs. [29]
most of nobility with country estates and holdings: the Wyvernspurs, the Dauntinghorns, the Skatterhawks, the Immerdusks, the Wintersuns, the Indimbers, the Rowanmantles, House Indesm, and the Rallyhorns all support the Crown-but not the Roaringhorns, who want king or council and no ruling queen. [29]
The Roaringhorns detest both the Bleth family and the wizard Vangerdahast [29]
Immaril Emmarask, cousin to the now-deceased Ensrin Emmarask. Said to be a bastard child of Azoun [31]
The Dauntinghorns-most of them-the Rowanmantles, the Rallyhorns, the Skatterhawks, the Immerdusks, The Wintersuns, the Wyvernspurs, the Indimbers… and House Indesm stand with Vangerdahast. Many are country squires and come to the court once a year at most [31]
Gaspar Cormaeril led them, and behind him, Tanalasta recognized Martin Illance, Morgaego Dauntinghorn, Reth Crownsilver, Cordryn Huntsilver, Braegor Truesilver, and others. All sided with Aunadar Bleth [33]
Hathian Talar, Purple Dragon, superior of Lareth Gulur
The power of the Cormaerils, the Bleths, and the others whose acts were treasonable is now broken. Their lands are seized, their titles are stripped from them, and some will be exiled. I'll not be slaying more folk than have already died, however. That's one lesson I've learned from Vangerdahast and his forebears. The realm is stronger than any one man, and it's always best not to bleed away the best of its stock in wasteful executions. [Epilogue]
Dauneth Marliir becomes Warden of the Eastern Marches [Epilogue]
Giogi Wyvernspur is awarded the Cormaeril lands [Epilogue]


Royal Palace
Satharwood Hall, also known as the Upper Easter Hall or Banqueting Hall. [3,5]
Belarjacks, position in the royal palace of Cormyr (under butler or footman perhaps????) [3]
Alaphondar and Dimswart, the leading sages of Suzail. They were rivals of sorts [3]
argil (a position/title) a page boy in palace livery [3]
knights of the chamber, stand outside Princess Tanalasta’s bedroom (do they guard the royal family????) [3]
Princess Tanalasta's sitting room. The room had been young Azoun's when Rhigaerd was on the throne, but the princess had brought her own delicate hand to its furnishings since then. Gone were the heavy stained oak armchairs and tables, and the maps of the realm that had looked down on them. Vangerdahast threaded his way through filigreed chairs of white-painted bow wood and gilded lounges covered with floral print cushions. The maps were gone, too. The old wizard thought, as he always did, that there were too many mirrors in these chambers now. [3]
Belnshor's Chamber, next to the Satharwood Hall. Usually used to store whatever furniture wasn't in use at the moment, a high-vaulted room [3,5]
Chamber of Crossed Dogs, has a gigantic wall carving of leaping hounds that had given the room its curious name. A small door opened onto a small, dark passage that gave onto a step halfway up Halantaver's Stair. Ascending, he passed through the echoing stateliness of Endevanor's Hall into the Salon of Six Scepters, nodding to the belarjacks who sprang to open doors before him. Across a hail from the eastern door of the salon was the Upper Eastern, or Satharwood, Banqueting Hall, the way to its closed doors barred by a solid line of grim Purple Dragons in full armor. [5]
the kitchens of the court were justly famous for small savoury pastries [5]
Palace Mage Halansalim [5]
Halantaver's Stair leads to Endevanor’s Hall [5]
Endevanor's Hall, echoing stately hall that leads into the Salon of Six Scepters [5]
Salon of Six Scepters, an eastern door leads to a hall and into the Satharwood Hall. [5]
Matron Maglanna, matron of a floor of the palace, doughty and dependable [5]
Redpetal Room [5]
Symylazarr, the Fount of Honor, upon which every leader of every noble house swears his or her fealty to the king. The blade was a relic of days gone by, its broad and heavy blade incised with deep, angular runes. Kiss the dragon's-head pommel and repeat the oath of fealty to the crown of Cormyr [5]
Secret vaults can be accessed through a secret door near the Redpetal Room. They lead under the palace (with a teleporter of sorts). The chambers are guarded by armoured guardians. A wall contains a keyhole (Vangerdahast holds a hollow metal sphere that can become a key with a command word) [5]
Lady Highness, how you refer to the princesses [7]
Grand Chamber, where holds his court [7]
Ansrivarr, the elvish word for "memory”. Mondar Bleth’s heavy hafted sword [10]
Gryphonsblade Hall, a sapphire domed hall [11]
Thanorbert, Purple Dragon veteran serving in the palace [11]
Hornbow Bower, one of a number of small sitting rooms that littered the palace, marked by potted plants and ornate screens. Next to Gryphonsblade Hall [11]
Mirror Bower next to the Hall of Heroes [11]
Hall of Heroes, lined with statues, normally deserted. Royal purple carpet. Last pair of white marble statues at the end of the carpet guarded three doors that led from the hall. [11]
Argent Robing Room, left out of the Hall of Heroes. A command word calls down utter darkness. A wall panel that very few living folk knew was a door, and unlocked it with the key while murmuring a spell to keep the enchanted guardian of the portal at bay. Ahead down a long passage stood a row of motionless guards in full armour. Vangerdahast strode right up to them and on past, and they stood like statues. "Helmed horrors" some called them, in truth, they were nothing more than empty suits of armour animated by his own spells. They guarded a door that the touch of his palm opened-a door that led into the Hidden Chambers. [11]
Eregar Abanther, servant of Tempus. [11]
Algus of the Keys [11]
Funeral rite of Duke Bhereu. With the duke's sword. Take it and four of your brethren of good strength and shared size to carry the duke. Let there be four more holy men of Tempus with lit torches to serve as escort. Bid the carriers take down Bhereu's shield of honour from the Gallant Gallery-Algus will show you where-and bear it in solemn procession to where the duke now lies, his sheathed sword upon it. Let such holy prayers as please Tempus be said then, and the duke taken up. Lead them yourself from that place. Bear him slowly, with dirge and tolling bell, through the palace, so the Purple Dragons you pass can give him sword salute, and take the fallen to the court, and to the Marble Forehall there. A bier awaits in that chamber. Lay him down there with the Warrior's Farewell. [11]
Gallant Gallery [11]
Marble Forehall [11]
Hidden Chambers. Bright sun spilled down from a vaulting skylight into the comfortably furnished room before him. Bookshelves lined the walls, and on a huge table gleamed, colorful maps of the Dragonreach lands, from Tunland as far east as the Vast. At the heart of the room, comfortable high-backed chairs and lounges surrounded a dragonhide rug. It yielded under his feet, soft and warm, as the Royal Magician strode from where his door opened, in the wall beside the fireplace [11]
Brightsun Bower [13]
Roaring Dragon Stair, the broad, sunlit stair led down to the Trumpet Gate of the palace [13]
Trumpet Gate of the palace, which faced the sprawling court at the base of the hill and gave onto the road between them hard by the Crown Bridge. Ahead lay the court stables, and beyond the stables, all along the southern shore of Lake Azoun, sprawled the vast, many-towered bulk of the court. Bhereu had been taken this way already, to lie in state in the busy Marble Forehall, passed by folk crossing and crisscrossing the mirror-polished pavement between the Inner Ward, the Duskene Chamber, the Retiring Rooms, the Rooms of State, no fewer than four grand staircases that all descended into the forehall, and the Sword Portal. [13]
The Sword Portal. Most folk in Suzail had stood before those massive double doors at least once in their lives, gaping at the armor plate that sheathed the thick timbers. Everyone in the city knew that the door was as thick as a brawny man's forearm, and everyone in the realm knew what the thick tangle of welded-on swords that covered both doors were: the captured blades of "foes of the Crown." The doors of the Sword Portal opened into the Processional. What very few folk indeed knew about the Sword Portal was that when it was swung open, the narrow, man-high openings revealed in the thickness of its frame were not only guard niches, though a guard in full armor usually stood in each of them, but also passages that led into a warren of secret ways and closets in the heart of the court. [13]
The Processional, a long, red-carpeted hallway that led straight to the Approach Chamber. [13]
the Approach Chamber, a guardpost of ornate gates and wall-mounted crossbows that in turn opened into the throne room. [13]
Perglyn Trusttower, Purple Dragon on guard duty in the palace. Usually loyal [13]
Angalaz, young Purple Dragon on guard duty in the palace [13]
The Blue Maiden Room took its name from the life-sized sculpture that stood on a plinth in its centre. A modest maiden sculpted of smooth-polished blue glass sat gazing up at the sky-looking for a dragon coming to devour her, legend had it-and in the meantime holding a cloak fortuitously fetched from somewhere over strategic areas of her beauty. The maiden's hands, feet, and breasts were much too large for the rest of her, and the overall effect was one of bold, gaudy, and surpassing ugliness. Azoun's father, Rhigaerd, had hated it, and his feelings of distaste were mild compared to the opinions held by several Obarskyr queens prior to his reign, but several sages swore that the maiden was somehow connected with the good fortune of House Obarskyr and should never be broken up, defaced, or lost. So when a careless court sage dabbled overmuch in forbidden sorceries and managed to blow up himself and the topmost room of a tower in the court, Rhigaerd had the maiden raised into the room while it was being rebuilt and walled in there. A narrow ladder shaft was the only way into the lofty, enclosed turret room, and the steep climb to get to it, up through the hidden heart of the court, made the maiden a favourite place for disgusted sword captains to send bumbling soldiers. "Go up and polish the maiden" was still heard on the streets of Suzail as a slightly more polite alternative to saying, "Lose yourself-far away, and now!" But only slightly… Nevertheless, it was relatively unusual for the dusty maiden to have visitors in her dark, lofty chamber, [13]
Lion Cellar. Go through the back of the third cask, mind, the fourth leads straight into a guardpost [13]
Royal Wing [19]
Tanalasta and Aunadar Bleth have obtained spellshields from King Azoun’s personal cache of magic [19]
Tower of the Balconies at the front of the royal court [21]
Dragon Door [21]
Blue Banners Room, has a secret door leading to outside the palace [23]
Under court cellars. There is an illusionary wall that leads to the secret vaults [23]
The golden bull that struck the king down was an automaton called an abraxus, a constructed creature animated by magic. One such beast appeared in Cormyr in the past and ended up-disabled-in this room. Now it's missing, and that means someone in the palace is a traitor [23]
Hall of Honour, where the names of common soldiers who had died valiantly in the service of the realm were graven on the stones of the wall [27]
Gemstars Hall, near the Hall of Honour [27]
Flamedance Hall, located inside the palace, has roaring hearths. The flames would be illusory during weather this warm, but their endless leapings were fascinating to watch nonetheless. [27]
Altar of Tymora, newly established [27]
Tanalasta had come to the clergy of the goddess and almost pleaded for the consecration of a temporary shrine to Tymora, so that she might have swift access to divine guidance whenever she felt need of it. High Priest Manarech had agreed without hesitation, with an eye to the future favour of the Dragon Throne, but Gwennath knew, and had a shrewd suspicion that Tanalasta did, too, that the old patriarch had no intention of any shrine to the goddess being temporary. [29]
The Hall of the Dragon Throne was one of the oldest parts of the court, Obarskyrs had walked here for more than a thousand years. Tall, fluted pillars ran down both sides of the lofty chamber, supporting a wooden gallery added by Palaghard in one of many renovations performed on the site over the years. Between the lines of columns, in the open area that was usually crowded with murmuring courtiers, stood the great sealed stone tomb of Baerauble the Mage, its surface worn smooth by the touch of a million hands over the countless years. Facing it was the lowest step of the short, curving flight that led to the high dais. On that bright-polished height stood two arch-backed chairs of state for the princesses of Cormyr, and between them the filigreed Throne of the Dragon Queen and the taller, simpler, far older Dragon Throne itself. All of them were empty. Minstrels' balcony, high above [33]


Tanalasta
Tanalasta's almost a wizard herself, at least with her ledgers and sums, but no taste for rulership there. You've seen her at court-cool and quiet. Too quiet. Hesitant to speak out, and the words halting when she does… a royal wallflower. [1]
thirty-six summers old [3]
Worships Tymora [27]

Alusair
Hell on horseback, all ego and fury, with talent to match. Every time she comes home, bets are heavy among the kitchen staff as to how long it'll be before she and her father get into a row about politics that breaks half the goblets and platters. She's all swords and armour right now and would rather be on the battlefield than on the throne. [1]
Alusair Nacacia Obarskyr, Mithril Princess of Cormyr. Ash blond hair, dark eyed [7]
Has a jewel-pommelled dagger, a spellshield dagger, that absorbs or dispels magic that it touches [7]
Has a gem that can close gates if hurled through them [7]
Alusair the Firetongue [7]

King’s Forest
An old beacon tower by a river, it had been abandoned long before there were human kings of Cormyr. The faded but fluid script over its door proclaimed elven builders now gone and forgotten. Their slender handiwork had once been three floors in height, but passing centuries had taken their toll, until it had collapsed into a small shell reached by broad, vine-covered steps. Such turrets bristled all over Cormyr, their summits used to relay messages quickly from one side of the realm to the other. (is this the horn tower in chapter 2????) [1]

Azoun
The king still could pass for a man of forty, if you discounted the grey streaks in his hair and beard. Still, he was as lean and well-muscled as ever, and could still best both his cousins at arm-wrestling, fencing, riding, or any other sport either could name. His riding leathers were his informal set: white leathers trimmed with purple, even the heavy boots and gloves. His court garb had been left at the lodge, a symbol that the general ceremony attendant on the crown should be set aside. Azoun's sword hung in a tattered scabbard on a weathered belt that one of the palace stewards would have consigned to the fire heap at a glance. The king wore a plain circlet on his brow, and an old, tattered brown scarf-a luck token from his queen-hid the hunting horn at his belt. Yet he rode like the great monarch he was, shoulders straight, quietly confident, clearly master of all around him without any need for arrogance or pomposity. [1]
Rhigaerd, Azoun’s father [1]
Has a slender ivory wand, sheathed just inside the royal boot top, when broken it summons immediate aid from Vangerdahast, royal guards, war wizards, and priests of Tymora [1]

Vangerdahast
Vangerdahast, the fat old mage in his familiar red-brown robes [1]
The wizard was not an imposing man physically, being of average height and greater than normal girth, but because of carefully placed spells, the very air crackled around him. His eyes could be as sharp as any sword, and his glare as piercing as any spear. [3]
His private library in the royal palace-the one the folk of the court knew about, at least-was little more than a large anteroom whose three full walls were covered by bookcases. Vangerdahast skirted the pedestal with its guardian watchskull and pulled down three volumes from the shelves: one on toxins, one on diseases, and a treatise on mechanical creatures. A book holder fashioned to resemble a silvery human hand. The hand immediately shifted to open the book to the title page and held it there, propping the pages open with its smallest finger and thumb. Vangerdahast thanked the magical contrivance gravely-the book bobbed a trifle in reply. Touch the helm of a staring knight carved into the decorative column of one bookcase. The helm slid inward with the faintest of clicks, and the spines of three massive, immovable tomes on a nearby shelf folded outward, revealing a small-and almost full-hiding place. The wizard pulled a flat plate from a stack in the hiding place, a circular, mirrored disk with runes around its periphery (a message plate), and tapped his finger on the door of the secret place, which rose smoothly to conceal the storage niche again. Muttering a spell over the message plate, quickly committing words to it for later retrieval. A chime only he could hear sounded. Vangerdahast laid one hand on the little sylph statuette that could spit lightning if need be [3]
he thought of mirrors as things from which unbidden horrors could emerge, not as something to admire oneself in. [3]
Vangerdahast’s mentor told him about the Abraxus (presumably long ago, unless he can communicate through the plate????) [3]
the staff of the High Wizard of Cormyr, can be called to Vangerdahast’s hand [5]
While the king is incapacitated, Vangerdahast is the Regent Royal of Cormyr [5]
The web of disguise spells he habitually wore to the Laughing Lass was impenetrable [5]
Royal Magician of the Realm, Court Wizard of Cormyr, Chairman Emeritus of the College of War Wizards, Lord High Wizard of Suzail, Scepter of the Stonelands, and Master of the Council of Mages [5]
Descended from Baerauble Etharr [5]
By the rulings of Rhigaerd with Azoun's signature upon them, giving Vangerdahast the authority to act in defense of the realm should he ever be unfit or unable to rule. [5]
a flat, circular silver plate, its heart a mirror, its edges crawling with running runes. A message plate [7]
Farspeaking that allowed the wizard to converse at great distances with the Obarskyr battle maiden Alusair. [7]
he laid tracing spells on Alusair and Tanalasta when they were babes. [7]
Has a ring from his belt pouch. It bore a device shaped like a golden lion and inscribed with the numeral 3 (a ignet ring????) [11]
There were few people in the realm that the stout old court wizard knelt to, but he did so now, in true reverence. [11]

Iliphar Nelnueve
His green garments billowed out behind him like a sail, the soft cassock and the long, slightly darker cope, flared so that it was almost a full cape. Threads of spun gold entwined and circled along the cope's front and hem, and here and there among their warm splendour gleamed delicate carvings of amber. Long, silver-blond hair drifted behind the elf in the false wind the dragon had wrought. The hair was held from wild and tangled ruin by a thin circlet marked by three spikes in the front and a purple amethyst at the centre of his brow. [2]
Bore a golden staff, its haft twisted to resemble a heavy rope, its tip adorned with another purple stone, this often carved into the shape of a soaring bird. The sash that gathered in the cassock at his slim waist bristled with wands along one hip, each wand in its own sheath. These battle wands had made the warrior mage famous among elves even before he rose to power. On his other hip the mage wore a thin elven sword, a long, narrow blade with a graceful haft and pommel. [2]
The best warriors of the elven House of Amaratharr bowed to this slender, still young wearer of green. His was the power that had brought them victory in battle after battle with the strongest foe they'd ever faced, the dragonkin of dread Thauglor. [2]
Lord of the Scepters. [2]
A jagged scar that crossed his face from temple to chin, the only mark that marred his otherwise smooth skin. It was a souvenir of his last encounter with Thauglor, a reminder that even proud elf lords should think twice before entering into battle with the Black Doom. [2]
A small golden scroll from inside his cope. Iis a document of my people, from mighty Myth Drannor to the north. It gives me hegemony over the elves of this land (Cormyr) [2]
His entire body, from neck to ankles, was encased in the thinly spun chain of the elves. Iliphar drew his sword as well, a slender, whiplike blade, perfect for digging beneath the dragon scales into the tender flesh beneath them. In his other hand, he still bore his golden staff. [2]
Iliphar’s golden staff was melted by Thauglor (stuck in his own mouth) and exploded. The purple stone bird atop it was broken in Thauglor’s mouth [2]

Alusair’s Knights – the Brightblades
No common Purple Dragon knights were these, but the youngest sons of the proudest noble houses in the land, all with titles and wealth of their own. [7]
Beldred Truesilver. Bearded [7]
Brace Skatterhawk, rumoured bastard son of Azoun [7]
Threldryn Imbranneth [7]
Alusair's knights were hot on the proverbial heels of an orc band. The twisted humanoids had been so bold as to raid a caravan on the road east of Eveningstar six days back, and they had almost caught the sweating, snorting beasts twice. Each time a handy ravine had allowed the swine-snouts to scramble free of fair battle and climb higher into the Stonelands hills. And so they chased the goblinoids deeper into this perilous region that Cormyr claimed but could not rule except by sword point. [7]
Fought a hydra, fire lizard, and trio of chimera on this foray [7]
The orcs led the Brightblades into a trap, a narrow valley, where the knights charged and were capped by lightning cast down the valley. A dark naga in the back of the vale launches magic (and presumably commands the orcs????). The orcs and the hydra and fire lizard and chimera are all working for the Zhents. A gate was at the back of the cave, through which reinforcements and new orders could arrive [7]
Dagh Illance, slain by the orcs, foolishness runs in the family [7]
Ulnder Huntcrown [7]
Harandil Thundersword, softspoken [7]
Kortyl Rowanmantle [7]

Stonelands
Startop Crag, deep in the Stonelands, with high meadows to the north [7]
The orcs led the Brightblades into a trap, a narrow valley, where the knights charged and were capped by lightning cast down the valley. A dark naga in the back of the vale launches magic (and presumably commands the orcs????). The orcs and the hydra and fire lizard and chimera are all working for the Zhents. A gate was at the back of the cave, through which reinforcements and new orders could arrive [7]

Other Lore
Amberfly, bitter orange liqueur [9]
Tempus thanks you, lord. - And I thank Tempus - the ritual response known only to faithful followers of the god of battles. [11]
Tethyrian tanagluth, spiced wine, ruby hued [11]
Chess Variations of the Masters of Old Impiltur, book on chess [Epilogue]

Language
Ansrivarr – elvish means “memory” [10]
Key'anna de Cormyr – elvish means "We guard this wooded land." [2]

Sembia
Yuthgalaunt, a little place on the road from Ordulin to Yhaunn. A lady in a cottage by the well, Baron Thomdor promised to marry her when he made something of himself, but he never did and always regretted it. Asked Vangerdahast to give her money to see her through her shadowed years after his death [11]

Queen Filfaeril
The Dragon Queen. Queen Filfaeril Selzair Obarskyr was blessed by the gods and her breeding with ice-blue eyes, golden blond hair, exquisite carriage-so that she drew the eyes of all men and most women whenever she moved-a slender figure and alabaster skin. What had attracted the interest of the young Azoun-for whom there was not shortage of available, even eager, stunningly beautiful women-however, was less her looks than her mind. Filfaeril was brilliant. She noticed everything that befell around her and understood people and implications better than many widely respected sages. [11]
Lord Alaphondar was obviously smitten with her [11]
slim everyday circlet of her rank from her head and held it out before her. The sapphires on its two brow spires flashed. [11]
Lady Queen, my intent is to send you and the Sage Royal to Waterdeep, your shapes disguised by magic, to a household where certain loyal war wizards of the realm have already been installed to watch over you." The eyes of the Royal Magician and Lord Alaphondar met briefly, behind the queen's back, the sage nodded almost imperceptibly. Alaphondar is Flammos Galdekund, and Filfaeril is Aglarra. Both Flammos and Aglarra really exist in Waterdeep [11]

Waterdeep
Flammos Galdekund an old merchant. His wife Aglarra, A shorter, almost mannish woman with a pot belly, bodice to match, and large, pimpled chin. They have servants [11]

Amn
Iritue’s FIresprings in southern Amn. Has healing waters [11]

Evil Ones
Meeting in a broom closet, a small secret chamber unused for years (in the royal palace????) [17]
Lady Brantarra, Red Wizardess of Murbant. Looks like a swirling mist with glowing eyes (not her real form). Provided the venom to kill Azoun. [17,33]
The Abraxus is known to Cormyr, if not to its current rulers. I think that an extremely amusing jest (does that mean the Abraxus was used before????) [17]
The Cormyrean agent that used the Abraxus sacrificed a servant to power it. Brantarra gave him a ruby gem to allow him to sacrifice another person at a distance, he must give it to the victim who will be near him when he finally confronts Vangerdahast [17]
The enemy is a woman, skilled in magic, once shared a bed with Azoun (is she the one that assaulted him and tried to assassinate him in 1352 DR the eve before the attack on Arabel [31,32]
Greetings, Vangerdahast, Royal Magician of Cormyr. Call me Brantarra-call me your nemesis. Long have you wondered who it was who shielded rebels and contrary nobles and outlaws from your seeking spells, and who protected them against your magic of rulership and punishment. I stand ready now to shield all the other nobles of Cormyr who desire such protection-from you and your petty magelings. I am the bane of the war wizards. I am the one who has frustrated you for so long. You think these were your masterminds, these clever young nobles unable to see beyond the ends of their swords? Mine was the hand that stole the abraxus from your precious vaults. Mine was the hand that guided these pawns before you. Mine was the skill that took your king's will, on a night eighteen years ago, in the sight of the walls of Arabel. Mine was the body that bore the son who will be your next king [33]
Gary Dallison Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 21:14:04

900 DR Year of the Thirsty Sword
Aosinin Truesilver, the king’s cousin [20]
King Galaghard III, children Rhigaerd and Tanalar and Kathla [20]
For the past three months, the Glory of Cormyr, the army of the king, had met and routed the Witch Lords' armies time and time again. At the fords of Wheloon, at the forgotten temple, at Juniril and again at the Manticore's Crossing, each time overrunning the Witch Lords' position and trampling their undead troops beneath the hooves of good Cormyrean steeds. Yet their foe had risen from the dead again and again-literally. From each battle, the most powerful Witch Lord necromancers slipped away, to regroup with forces of mouldering fighting men freshly disinterred. Now the Glory of Cormyr had ridden to the limits of their supplies and trapped the remaining human mercenaries and levies of the Witch Lords flat against the western verges of the Vast Swamp. A victory here would break their power in Cormyr forever and free the eastern half of the realm from their threat. [20]
Dauntinghorns, Illances [20]
the pavilion. Its interior had a ghostly, ethereal quality. There were elves on all sides, lounging on broad pillows. They sipped fluted glasses of glowing fluids, regarding the passing humans as if they were mongrel dogs who had wandered into a dinner party. Then the elves turned their attention back to their own dealings. Somewhere in the distance, a sad lute was being played, joined by a wispy thin, haunting voice that just caught the edges of their hearing. The greatest chamber of the pavilion was nearly empty. A pair of guards stood at the entrance, clad in finely-made but archaic chain mail. Across the chamber stood the twisted stump of an ancient tree, a living throne into which three seats had been carved. Two of the seats were empty. The third, the farthest to the right, was occupied by a single cadaverous figure Othorion Keove. [20]
Othorion Keove, last of the house of Iliphar Nelnueve, the Lord of Scepters. The figure on the throne was clad from head to toe in chain, its ornately shaped links as fine as any that could be crafted in Suzail, even by dwarven hands. Its design, like the mail worn by the guards, was archaic, and many of the links were thin enough from wear to appear nearly translucent. The elf's face was elongated, his cheeks and eyes deeply sunken, his remaining hair silver-white and flowing from a receding forehead. I have resisted the call of Evermeet the Fair for many years in order to fight against the human incursions, to fight against the fiends of the pit who claimed Myth Drannor, and lately to fight against the southerners who sought to claim our forests unasked [20]
Forest buffalo, giant owlbears, envenomed pumas, great rugs. They all vanished long ago [20]
Thanderahast - You are the blood of old Baerauble Elf-friend? The blood must be thin indeed by now, though I believe something magical pulses through your veins, allowing you a long life as old Baerauble had [20]
Marsember had sent some desperately needed infantry, fresh but untried. They would stand on the left flank. The veteran Purple Dragons would hold the right, backed up by Thanderahast's apprentices. Arabel had sent troops, but even their marching was a shaky, undisciplined affair, they might well prove unreliable. Their ranks would be seasoned with veteran militia from Suzail and placed in the centre, near the king and the main vanguard. Those nobles not leading specific units would be mounted and go into battle flanking the royal forces, behind the central troops. [20]
Luthax survived and sided with the Witch Lords [20]
Patriarchs of Helm the Watchful strutted along the line, each with an attendant acolyte and a bucket of holy water. The patriarch would dip a hollow mace, its head pierced with a hundred tiny holes, into the barrel, then fling the water over the waiting troops, blessing them en masse with the Tears of Helm. [20]
The men of Arabel looked nervous but resolute, Aosinin thought, eager to prove their worth and banish the last vestiges of the term "rebel Arabel." Yet a mantle of fear hung on them that even the blessing of watchful Helm did nothing to dissipate. The troops from Marsember were descendants of the original smugglers and pirates who had founded and refounded that swampy, independent city. They looked fully capable of taking on the Witch Lords by themselves. Indeed, if the king hesitated any longer, they would do exactly that. [20]
The king was mounted on his black charger, a magnificent mount clad in ivory-shaded barding. The charger's armoured headpiece had been fitted with a unicorn's horn, no doubt further enchanted by the Royal Wizard to protect the rider. Galaghard's own armour was polished to a lustre that caught the sun's rays and threw them back like a mirror. On his chest was the painted symbol of Cormyr, the Purple Dragon, adopted officially since the years of pirate exile. [20]
The Marsembians started to advance in response, only to be hauled back by the shouted curses of their noble leaders. Marliir was the name, [20]
n eager-looking young Skatterhawk rode on Thanderahast's other side, paired with an older, grimmer Thundersword. As they rode, both nobles waggled the blades of their swords to flash reflected sun into the eyes of their foes. [20]
They had closed about half the distance to the enemy line when the bats appeared. The ungainly creatures lofted up from the back of the enemy lines, great fur-covered giants with twisted faces and dead-white skin, shadowing the morning light with their numbers. Humans rode the backs of the daunting beasts-humans wearing dark helms bedecked with stag antlers. The lieutenants of the Witch Lords. [20]
Ahead, the Witch Lords' troops halted on the near slope of the valley. Ogres were bellowing orders, and orcs and goblins were desperately trying to form a line, spear-points out, to break the Cormyrean charge. Most would not complete the manoeuvre before they were struck down. [20]
When Truesilver did have time and breath to look up again, he was wet with blood clear up to his gorget, and half the nobles of the Glory of Cormyr were down. Cormaerils, Dauntinghorns, and Crownsilvers had vanished from their saddles and now lay dead and trampled beneath feet and hooves in the battle. The king was farther away now, driven apart from his cousin by the weight of the advancing undead. [20]
Heart rising in sudden hope, he stood in his stirrups as his faithful steed raced along, and he looked beyond units of snarling, hurrying ogres in time to see the elves arrive on the battlefield. Some were flying, and these joined the wizards in their airborne struggle with the bat riders. The remainder rode great stags, giant elk whose heads were heavy with iron-tipped antlers. This was the true Glory of Cormyr, Aosinin realized. The armor of the elves glowed, as their tent had the night before, in a scintillating pattern of green and gold. They were few in number, but to an elf, they were heavily armed and armored. The Witch Lord line disintegrated as they struck it full force, the ogres falling like crops at harvesttime under the wicked, slender blades of the elves. In mere moments they were slain, and the elves were through to the heart of the wedge of orcs. Without their leaders, the goblins and orcs dropped their weapons and tried to flee, only to be cut down as they ran. Aosinin heard exultant singing and realized that it came from the elves. More of the goblin troops fled at the sound. The glowing wave of death caught up with Aosinin's band and passed on by, and the Truesilver urged his Arabellans to join the flank of the stag riders. One entire wing of the Witch Lords' army was in flight before them, and individual elves were breaking away to chase down stragglers. Now the charging elves struck the zombies at the heart of the Witch Lords' host, troops too mindless to run. Bright blades flashed, and graceful bodies leaned and slashed and rose to slash again in a deadly dance that separated limbs from bodies and forced the dead to fall. In less time than Aosinin would have believed possible, the undead had also fallen beneath the hooves of the rushing stags. The Cormyrean infantry could clearly see what was happening now and raised a great cheer as they hacked at orcs and goblins with renewed heart. [20]
Overhead, the surviving bat riders wheeled and fled into the Vast Swamp. Two were immolated as they flew, but another half-dozen outran the mages and elves and disappeared into the misty bogs beyond, flapping frantically. [20]
Their mounts exhausted from the charge, Aosinin, Galaghard, and the elf lord rode slowly to a low hillock overlooking the battle. Below, the priests of Helm were tending to the human wounded and dispatching dying orcs. Several smoldering piles marked where trolls had fallen, they would have to be immolated later to make their deaths final. Thanderahast landed nearby, his robes bloodied and scorched. He nodded to the king, and Galaghard saluted him formally. Words would be exchanged later, Aosinin knew, about the High Wizard abandoning the knights of the court to pursue his own personal vendetta. [20]
Hear me, human, for I have altogether too much wisdom bought over long and bloody years. It is easy to rule from a distance, but difficult to lead from the front of a battle. It is easy to order, but hard to inspire. It is simple to conquer, but hard to rule. That is why you triumphed this day over the unseen necromancers. I had my doubts as to your fate, and your worth, until I saw one of your brother humans sacrifice himself in the fray to purchase you time. Such loyalty is more precious than all the gold in your vaults. [20]
The elf waved a dismissive hand. "For a year, perhaps two, we shall abide here," Othorion replied, "but no true elf can resist the call of Evermeet forever. Yet in these fair forests, I think there will be good hunting for a small while. [20]

1018 DR Year of the Dracorage
Crown Prince Azoun (second of his name). The crown prince was whipsaw thin and gangly. Doesn’t like Jorunhast. Only heir to the throne of Cormyr [22]
The wizard had no love for this crown prince, and deep in his heart, he hoped that Thanderahast would hang onto life long enough that Jorunhast could be the court wizard of the next King of Cormyr after Azoun. But not this one. Any king but this one. To swear fealty to such an egotistical, pampered, self-centred child! To call him "Sire" and "liege" and "master"! Jorunhast shook his head. Even the young prince's voice was shrill, tinny, and irritating to the mage's ears. Only three years Aseparated the two in age, but the young prince still sounded like a petulant child. [22]
Jorunhast, the apprentice wizard broad-shouldered and well muscled [22]
King Arangor, whom Jorunhast thought had grown fat and lazy in his long, peaceful rule [22]
The great rage of dragons had descended on Cormyr without warning and without mercy. Arabel, Dhedluk, Eveningstar, and a score of other settlements had gone up in flames. Small hamlets were reduced to kindling, and the roads would likely once more become haunted, dangerous paths through lawless wilderness. But it was Suzail that had suffered the worst. Three great dragons, red wyrms of huge dimensions, had descended on the city like eagles among sheep. The docks and the lower wards, built mostly of wood, roared up in flames. Most of the stone buildings weathered the initial blasts, though glass melted and scorched wooden doors caught fire from the heat. Those buildings that still stood, the dragons ripped apart with their claws, seeking the humans cowering within. Castle Obarskyr sat above the conflagration, separated from the flames by wide gardens now wilted from the heat. Protected by generations of spells, wards, and glamours, it became the rallying point for the city. Here the nobility fled, and here, in the scented chambers of King Arangor, the response was launched. [22]
Three wings of Purple Dragon guardsmen had erupted from the secure doors of the castle. King Arangor, barely fitting into his own armour, led one wing south to the docks, accompanied by Thanderahast. The future King Azoun II led a similar wing of troops to the west, where the smallest of the three dragons was ravaging the warehouses and taverns. The third wing struck north and east, where the noble manors were clustered along the base of the hill. This was the smallest of the groups but contained many of the nobility of the realm-the Crownsilvers and Truesilvers, the Dracohorns and Dauntinghorns, the Bleths and Illances. This group was led by Lord Gerrin Wyvernspur and aided by Thanderahast's pupil, Jorunhast. Each of the groups met their dragons and triumphed. The crown prince's soldiers drove out the dragon to the west. The dragon on the docks was trapped against its own burning work and slain, but at a heavy cost-the king was sent flying from his saddle in the fray and severely injured. Lord Gerrin's party found the third red dragon prowling the cobblestoned streets of the noble district like a huge hunting panther, sniffing at cellar stairs to discern which houses had plump aristocracy hiding in the basement. The noble knights struck hard and fast, and Jorunhast barely had time to unleash a few spells before they had run the dragon through. [22]
A fourth dragon, larger than any they had seen before, descended on Castle Obarskyr. It had come out of the north, and Lord Gerrin's party saw it first. [22]
Thauglor. The new arrival was three times the size of the great elder wyrms they had previously fought. Its once ebony scales were purple and grey with age. As it beat its wings, the rushing winds extinguished some flames in the lower city, fanned others, and caused many damaged buildings to collapse. It landed on the castle, and the west wing collapsed beneath its prodigious weight. The purple dragon, the true Purple Dragon of Cormyr, had returned. [22]
Lord Gerrin Wyvernspur, strongest and most noble of the knights [22]
The Purple Dragon continued its slow, leisurely destruction of the castle's western wing. Ancient stonework crumbled under its weight, and the slate roof shrieked and crashed inward. Jorunhast was relieved. Most of the noble refugees were in the east wing. The west wing contained the guest quarters, the scriptorium, and the library. And Thanderahast's spell-chambers, filled with all manner of dangerous devices and explosive magic. The dragon crushed something better left uncrushed, probably in the wizard's chamber of alchemy itself. There was a fierce white flash and a roar, and the ground beneath them rolled and surged. The brightness of the flash was later reported to have been seen in Arabel, a brief, flickering star on the horizon. [22]
the lake named after the first Azoun [22]
Upon reaching the ground, the young maiden refused to release her tight grip and pledged eternal love and loyalty to her brave rescuer. Jorunhast accepted the praise-and kisses-warmly, then lifted his head to see the crown prince staring at him icily. It was then that the broad-shouldered wizard suddenly remembered the young lady was one Azoun himself had been courting. Carefully the wizard disengaged himself from the young woman, but the damage had already been done. The crown prince was not as handsome, as tall, or as well mannered as the apprentice mage. Jorunhast could feel the burning royal jealousy. Indeed, had not young Azoun driven off a dragon, only to find the wizard had been declared a hero thanks to some bit of parlour magic? [22]
That was three days ago. Since then, the citizens of Suzail had buried their dead, put out their fires, and picked through the remains of the city for survivors and salvage. A full half of the buildings in the city had been destroyed, and a third of the population killed. A quarter of the castle was shapeless ruins, and most of the rest was smoke-gutted and scorched. Yet some god or other had been smiling on the Obarskyrs, it seemed. The throne room had survived, as had the Shrine of the Four Swords and the great treasures of the kingdom. The heart of Cormyr had survived the flames, but just barely. [22]
Outriders and heralds were posted to all the major towns and villages for reports to determine the extent of the dragons' depredations. Most of the noble knights, led by Lord Huntsilver, rode north to Arabel, where a pair of green dragons had emptied the city. [22]
the marshalling grounds near Jester's Green, once known as Soldier's Green [22]
The Purple Dragon, Thauglor, had been spotted in the King's Forest, apparently licking its wounds from the explosion at the castle. It had not flown off into the mountains (to the north and west) for a long slumber as it had apparently done many times before [22]
Thanderahast had to have served forty kings in his time. [22]
As far as Thauglor the Black is concerned, he has been sighted before. Out in the wilderness, far from any city and any king. And each time his appearance has marked a weakness in the crown and the nation. What are the people saying now that the Purple Dragon has attacked the castle itself? [22]
Thanderahast rode Lord Gerrin Wyvernspur (in wyvern form) to battle Thauglor [22]
Prince Azoun killed Thauglor with Orbyn, the Edge of Justice, while Jorunhast used a wand of ancient Netheril to kill Thauglor by firing into an open wound [22]
Lord Wyvernspur was badly burned, the left side of his face and entire body raw and bleeding beneath the slimy ointments of the priests. Thanderahast was similarly burned and anointed, and in addition sported purplish ridges rising along the side of his head, bruises from some sudden impact. [22]
Lathander [22]

1118 DR Year of the Soft Fogs
King Pryntaler, young king, son of King Palaghard and the warrior queen Enchara of Esparin, he had grown strong and true, the very image of his father. He had his father's broad shoulders and piercing blue eyes. He had inherited his mother's fiery temper, however, and her ability to bring the troops to a blood boil. [24]
the narrowest part of Thunder Gap, the traditional boundary between the Land of the Purple Dragon and the Chondathan colonies of Sembia. But now the Sembian cities were colonies no longer, but a nation of merchant cities ruled by expediency and gold rather than kings and wizards. The uplands around the storm-haunted peaks, which had been so much wilderness for so many centuries, were now regularly transversed by merchant caravans. A light woods of small, stunted fruit trees ran down to the lake. Once it must have been an orchard or a grove planted for late harvesting, but its original planters were gone, leaving only the trees as a living memorial. [24]
For three days, the king had met with the representatives of the Sembian houses, and for three days, he and Jorunhast had returned to their own fires without a settlement. Each day Pryntaler's war mutterings grew louder and sharper. The sticking point was Marsember, of course. A nominally independent city-state on the Cormyrean side of the Thunder Peaks, it had extensive ties, both legal and less so, with Sembia. The more prestigious Marsemban merchant families, craving respectability, favored merging with the Sembian state, while the nobles and the shadier merchants wanted it to remain an open city. The senior nobility, the Marliir family, sought the support, if not the armies and taxes, of the Cormyrean crown. Jorunhast was supportive of an independent Marsember, at least for the time being. There were many times when the business of the crown needed to be dealt with in the shadows of Marsember rather than braving the bright scrutiny of many noble eyes in the halls of Suzail. A measure of independence was needed for that. Sembian rule would be worse. An established presence of Sembians on the western side of the Thunder Peaks would be an ever present encouragement for the more adventurous among the merchant families. Once the Sembians had one of their cities on this side of the Thunders, what would keep other cities and towns-such as Arabel, cradle of rebels-from swearing fealty to gold as opposed to the Dragon Throne? [24]
Jorunhast sighed deeply. He had grown as well, though most of that had involved an ever-increasing waistline. His shoulders were still broad, and he had slowed the work of time sufficiently to keep his good looks. But next to Pryntaler, the wizard tended to resemble a baker or a contented Lathanderite friar. [24]
The Sembians, Kodlos was their nominal leader, but he had to check with the others before deciding even on breakfast. The vulpine Homfast and vulturelike Lady Threnka were united in their lust to make Marsember Sembian. Old Bennesey was the scholar of the group and seemed to have every treaty, purchase, and chance meeting of the two nations committed to memory. And Jollitha Par sat there and said nothing but watched everything, a spider waiting at the center of his web. [24]
Juarkin and Thessilion Crownsilver, fell into place behind him. Pryntaler thought of them as watchdogs. Jorunhast thought of the two nobles as the king's minders and, more importantly, as the wizard's informants. [24]
The Sembians were a bureaucracy without a strong leader, and as treacherous to deal with as a community of drow. On the other hand, now was a time for speakers, not warriors. If the king could not deal with the Sembians, war loomed on the horizon, if not with Sembia, then somewhere else. [24]
in Palaghard's day. Pryntaler's father almost launched the nation into a war with distant Procampur soon after his coronation, when a new crown crafted for the coronation was stolen. The king thought the jewellers of Procampur were responsible, and he mustered the armies accordingly. The true thief, the pirate lord Immurk, was eventually revealed and the crown recovered. It was an ugly, top-heavy monster of sculpted gold, and after a few months, it was relegated to the family treasury in favour of the original three-spired crown. Yet that golden monstrosity had nearly started a war. [24]
Jorunhast was among the trees when he heard the sounds of battle ahead, at the edge of the lake itself. Human shouts were punctuated by the clang of metal clashing against metal. Jorunhast broke into a trot, his young scribe scrambling to keep up. The two burst from the trees to see that the two Crownsilvers were already down, and the king himself was locked in combat with a great metallic gorgon. The creature's scaled flanks caught the moonlight and reflected it back in shattered shards. Its massive head was wreathed in clouds of greenish smoke. It was slowed by a lightning bolt. It is an abraxus, These were automatons, created by Chondathan mages, but they could be used by anyone. They were usually activated by an unwilling human sacrifice and served as both guards and assassins [24]


1227 DR Year of the Wall
Rhodes Marliir, youngest cousin of a minor relative of a fallen noble house, stalked the streets of Marsember hunting for the King of Cormyr. In its sheath, his serrated dagger wept sweet poison. Rhodes Marliir was nobility in name only. His immediate family was not within spitting distance of the Marsembian throne, but his was the only branch that had not perished battling the invading horde. And now, blade in hand, the young rogue was intent on exacting his revenge. His uncles and great-uncles lay in Marsember Bog unavenged [26]
The fall of Marsember had come within a generation of the establishment of Sembia's western border. Once the Purple Dragon established a permanent border with Sembia, the slow, continual tightening of his royal gauntlet around the port city began. Finally, just to stay free, the ruling Marliir family had been forced to publicly endorse the pirate trade in the city and to declare hostilities against the Forest Kingdom. And that's when Dhalmass, mighty Dhalmass, the Warrior King of Cormyr, crossed the marshes and took the City of Islands.
King Dhalmass, the Warrior King. Dhalmass was a great war leader, but only a fair-to-middling ruler. He was too much the slave to a lust for battle, as well as for… other, more earthy lusts. [26]
petty nobles, like the Eldroons and the Scorils, who had loudly encouraged the ruling Marliirs to stand firm against the Purple Dragon. Then these supposedly loyal followers deserted the cause when the king's forces first entered the marshes, and some-Rhodes suspected the treacherous Eldroon household-even guided the Cormyrean army through the tortuous byways of the marsh to the city's open gates. Now those traitors tooted silver horns and threw gaudy bits of paper to celebrate their new masters and Marsember's incorporation into the nation of Cormyr. [26]
last of the Janthrins and the Aurubaens lay in Marsember Bog. Mighty Marsemban nobles all [26]
Dhalmass had taken over the old Marliir manor as his base of operations in Marsember a fortnight ago. [26]
Half-hand Elos, merchant in Marsember loyal to the Marliir’s [26]
the newly arrived queen, Jhalass Huntsilver, had suddenly taken ill and the king was abroad in the city. [26]
The pawnmaster Jacka Andros, loyal to the Marliir’s [26]
the Cloven Shield, tavern in Marsember [26]
Drowning Fish Festhall. And the proprietress of the Fish, the old crone Magigan [26]
Marsember. Half of the city was located on a treble-handful of unnamed islands hunched along the marshy shore. These small islets were linked by innumerable bridges of crumbling stone and sea-weathered wood, which added further to the mazelike nature of Marsember. The narrow streets and bridges of the inner islands were packed with revellers and soldiers. More warriors had fallen in the last two tendays to inebriation and exhaustion than had died in the brief siege of the city's low walls. The two-tenday anniversary of the takeover, prompted by the arrival of Queen Jhalass and rumour of the king being abroad in the city, had served as reason enough to spark a new wave of revels hard on the heels of the previous ones. [26]
Jorunhast, Royal Magician of Cormyr. broad-shouldered man whose large gut spilled over the top of his belt. He wore red and black robes of vivid hues and expensive make. A mage's sigil in gold thread was embroidered over his heart. [26]
The Book of Life. a small book. He raised the book and muttered something in an alien tongue. Sparks of light danced around the pages and grew swiftly in brightness and number, to orbit the volume like the streaming stars in the skies over Faerun. The wizard laid the book on the king's forehead. The sparks danced, flared once, and then died. Dhalmass continued to lie there, blue and stiff. The wizard leaned on the bed with both fists, his shoulders slumped in defeat. He cursed again, longer and louder this time. "That's it, then," said the wizard. "He's well and truly dead. His mighty heart failed him, obviously in a moment of passion. [26]
Once word gets out that both king and queen died in Marsember, regardless of how, there will be a gnashing of teeth and a seeking of revenge. Or, as you would call it, 'justice.' Seven companies of Purple Dragons walk-and drink deeply-in this city right now. Tell them their king, their warrior king, is dead, and his queen alongside him. Can you imagine the carnage and rioting that will ensue [26]
King Dhalmass died of a heart attack, Queen Jhalass died of food poisoning. Both in Marsember. Rhodes Marliir agrees to impersonate King Dhalmass so they can stage Dhalmass’s death far from Marsember (at the hands of the Fire Knives). In return Rhodes Marliir gets to become a noble of Arabel. One of the maids with the king when he died was transformed into the queen and in return she married Rhodes Marliir. A young blonde maid (also with the king when he died), unknown her fate (could she be pregnant????) [26]
Marsember has no love of the Fire Knives thieves' guild [26]
King Palaghard the second is a more thoughtful man. I think it will be easy to convince him to improve upon his late father's acquisition (Marsember), to bring in stone and new construction. I swear I will move him in that direction. [26]
King Dhalmass was well loved in Arabel [26]
Marliir House [26]

1286 DR Year of the Rock
King Salember, The Red Dragon King, had led the country for the last 9 years. Nine years ago Salember's brother, Azoun III of the Forest Country, had died, leaving behind a son (Rhigaerd) too young to rule a nursery chamber, let alone a kingdom. Jorunhast came to Salember then with the offer of a regency-a temporary rule until Crown Prince Rhigaerd was of age. Salember stepped up to the Dragon Throne, a position he'd never sought. And he'd served for nine years, and served well. People were living better, imports were up, and the depredations of orcs, goblins, brigands, and dragons sharply on the downswing. So after nine years, it made perfect sense to keep the same steady hand at the helm. But, no, the traditionalists, the monarchists, the mired-in-rules old thinkers resisted. He'd taken Palaghard's crown from a century ago as his own, and the ornate, gem-encrusted helm weighed heavily. Salember flew the Red Dragon, a colour of battle and blood, over the castle. [28]
Everything had been knocked askew by this upstart prince. Work was undone, crops unharvested, deals unmade. Even the castle itself was filled with projects half accomplished before the servants fled. Tapestries were half hung, shields of treacherous houses pulled from the wall but left lying when they fell. Salember passed the Blue Maiden, a favorite statue, resting beside its plinth, waiting for the workers to lift her up to the pedestal. Salember cursed at the sloppiness of the staff, along with their weak loyalties. [28]
Salember paused by one of the great gallery windows overlooking the city. The sun was westering, and most of Suzail lay at his feet, already cloaked in the deep shadows of early evening. There were fires in the city tonight, fires unnecessary for so close to Midsummer Eve. They marked the sites of battles between his faction and that of Rhigaerd, between the Reds and the Purples, between those who served the rightful ruler and those who followed a pretender to the throne. The flames of burning buildings made him think of red dragons against the shadowed city, but the spiraling smoke reminded him of purple dragons in the dying sun. [28]
Prince Rhigaerd, when he came of age he demanded the crown, then fled into the wilderness to marshal his own forces. He took the banner of the Purple Dragons with him. King Rhigaerd II [28]
Out there in the city and in the countryside beyond the walls, the factions were sparring and battling. In the streets of Arabel and swampy Marsember, in forested Dhedluk and mountainous High Horn, the country was riven. The Purple Dragons were torn apart, with units and mages taking opposite sides. The Battle Brotherhood had been shattered into a hundred individual mages, all of whom had headed for their towers and lairs. Even the churches-the Helmites, the Lathanderites, the Mystrans-were riven by the choice. [28]
The Blue Maiden, sages said the maiden was linked to the good fortune of House Obarskyr and should never be smashed, disgraced, or lost. [28]
Jorunhast. The wizard would still be there. He was tethered to the crown like a mongrel dog, as all the Royal Magicians, Crown Wizards, and Lords of Magic of the past had been. Yes! He, Salember, had found that in Baerauble's original books: The wizards were magically bound to protect the crown. Others had forgotten that, but not wise old Salember. Whatever else happened, the Royal Magician would be loyal. [28]
All the Dauntinghorns and Marliirs and Wyvernspurs, retiring to their country holdings to wait out the storm. Truesilvers, Crownsilvers, and Huntsilvers! They were cousins to both him and Rhigaerd, yet they mumbled their loyal oaths and equivocated and minced when pressed for troops and aid! The nobles remained loyal at first. Then slowly they started to drift away. Not to Rhigaerd, of course… never to Rhigaerd. They valued their own hides too much. A few traitors had died horribly, as examples. Salember had used his gold well, and the Fire Knives were very effective at creating examples. [28]
The throne room, the Hall of the Dragon Throne. [28]
The four chambers of the Great Swords, opposite the Hall of the Dragon Throne. The king was sure that Jorunhast or one of his predecessors had ensorcelled this part of the castle, making the air heavy and muffling all sound. Even when the castle was bustling and vibrant, it had a tranquil, hushed nature to it. Here, on velvet plinths, rested the four great blades of Cormyr. Ansrivarr, the Blade of Memory, was the first, a large, crude sword that hearkened back to the days of wilderness and elves. Symylazarr, the Font of Honour, upon which the treacherous nobles had sworn fealty, was as broad as the Blade of Memory and etched along its blade with archaic runes. Orblyn, King Duar's mageforged sword, with which he rallied the kingdom during the Pirate Exile, was a thinner, more modern blade. And Rissar, the Wedding Blade, small and delicate and finely shaped, was used for marriage vows and blood promises. So much like Cormyr today-ornate, gaudy, and ineffective in a real fight. Orblyn was covered with fine runes lightly etched into the blade. Salember had to hold the blade up to the light to see them clearly. The magical inscriptions seemed to twist and writhe as he watched. After all these years, Orblyn had held its edge and its sharpness. [28]
The throne room was one of the oldest parts of the castle, the heart of the Obarskyr family's lair for over a millennium. To one side stood the great sealed stone tomb of Baerauble himself, its surface worn smooth by the touch of a million hands over the ageless years. To the other side was the low rise of steps that led to the throne itself. Sometimes there were two chairs on its highest step, for king and queen, other times there was just one [28]
Damia Truesilver, most cowardly of the cowardly nobles, Rhigaerd's confidante. The woman's belly was swollen with child, and Salember remembered Lord Truesilver himself begetting her with another whelp ere he died in battle. [28]
A bloody battle near Wheloon, where the Red and Purple factions beat each other to corpses thick upon the ground… to no resolution. [28]
Already the Sembians are making restless noises about protecting trade. And agents of the Black Network and the Thayvian wizards cross our borders freely. [28]
I found Baerauble's records, mage! The elves have forced your kind to serve the crown. You must follow my orders! You must deal with the threat to the crown! Kill them. . . . Sainted Baerauble was forced to serve the crown, yes. Amedahast, Thanderahast, and I-we served through choice and through loyalty. Loyalty to the crown, but also to the king and the people and the country itself. [28]
"Yet you have killed a king," said Rhigaerd solemnly, "and for that, the sentence is death. I hereby commute that sentence to eternal exile. You will leave Suzail, wizard, and never return to it again." "None will trust a kingslayer, regardless of his motives," said Rhigaerd, "and none will believe me to be truly a ruler if I keep Salember's chief plotter as my own." "Cormyr has always had a wizard, but now will not," said Rhigaerd carefully. "In your exile, find and train the best young mage you can find. When I marry and produce an heir, I will send word far and wide, to where you cannot help but hear-and I bid you then send your pupil to become my son's tutor. Cormyr can survive without its wizard, but not for long. In this, I command you." [28]

1324 DR Year of the Grimoire
Crown Prince Azoun, son of Rhigaerd and the fourth Obarskyr. At nineteen winters old, the young noble was already broad-shouldered and handsome. Soon he'd have to make use of magical disguises to avoid being recognized at once [30]
Prince Azoun, traveling through his own country as Balm the Cavalier with Vangerdahast as Borl the Proficient [30]
Vangerdahast. The larger and more portly Vangerdahast was similarly attired and equipped, save that he had a short walking staff instead of a sword. Azoun had no doubt that the leather-shod walking stick held more magic than any gnarled staff wielded by a more powerful mage. [30]
Azoun’s father was king by 19 years of age [30]
Old Owlbear Inn, along Starwater Trail (which travels along the banks of the Starwater River). 2 days walk from Eveningstar [30]
Azoun recited the names of the nineteen young kings and seven warrior queens, starting with Gantharla, and of the four recognized illegitimate kings [30]
Eveningstar and the monster-haunted halls that reached through the gorge north of the village. This region had been his own playground back when he was a boy. It was here, Vangerdahast would point out, that he'd first decided to become a wizard, and there, he would note, that he was later taken on by Jorunhast, the last Royal Magician of the Court. [30]
Jorunhast killed Salember when the Rebel Prince threatened to kill your father and your grandmother Damia Truesilver. Then your father thanked the mage and banished Jorunhast from the court. Cormyr was without an official mage until your elder sister was born, and I was sent for to act as her tutor, and yours as well. However, King Rhigaerd has withheld the official title of Royal Magician from me, as is his right. (does this mean Damia Truesilver’s child became Rhigaerd’s wife????) [30]
Returning to Suzail twenty years after Jorunhast left, I saw that the kingdom had survived being officially wizardless quite nicely. Thirteen centuries of careful and not-so-careful building had left a good foundation that two passing decades could not demolish. But small things had cropped up-the weakness of the battle wizards, the growth in power of the thieves' guilds, the erratic politics of Arabel, and the shady dealings of Marsember. All small things in themselves, but with great future consequences if they were ignored. Your father chose not to ignore them and sent for Jorunhast's pupil. In this your father showed great wisdom, a lesser king might see Cormyr's prosperity and decide it did not need an official wizard after all. [30]
Goldfeathers," corrected the mage. "A minor house from a few hundred years back. They fomented an unsuccessful rebellion in Arabel years ago and were stripped of their rank and lands. The house itself was fashioned in a style some called "Cormyr Sprawl." The main house was a foursquare, sturdy block of fieldstones on the ground floor and brick for the floor above, thickly covered with ivy along its southern face. On three sides, additional wings had been built of stone or lumber or unfinished wood. The result looked like three houses had collided in the depths of some dark night, and no one had bothered to disentangle them since. Over the door was a faded and battered heraldic device [30]
Kamara Brightsteel, errant adventurer and solver of mysteries. She was almost as tall as Azoun, but slender and as lithe as a panther. She wore leather trousers that hugged her muscular thighs and calves, and a loose cotton blouse with a heavy leather vest that did nothing to conceal her charms. Her auburn hair was braided in a whiplike tail down her back. Her eyes were bright and green, and she carried a thin, double-bladed sword. Kamara was a weretiger. She dropped her sword and leapt, snarling, at the young prince, paws outstretched, slavering maw open. [30]
Azoun beat off Kamara but she escaped and survived. Vangerdahast may have arranged the whole situation (so Kamara could be an agent of Vangerdahast????) [30]

1352 DR Year of the Dragon
The watch fires burned in a rough crescent along the hilltops south of Arabel. Each fire marked a thousand men, Purple Dragons, local militiamen, adventuring bands, and mercenaries. All were poised and ready for the assault on the rebellious city, come the dawn. [32]
King Azoun IV, seventy-first of the Obarskyr line [32]
He, his men, and those who have flocked to his banner in the past three months," Thomdor replied grimly. His forces had spent those three months chasing the self-styled bandit king over most of northern Cormyr. Eight days ago their prey had alighted in Arabel, crowned himself Gondegal I with a crown snatched from a Sembian tomb, and dared any other man to take that crown from him. No one knew Gondegal's origin, though he claimed the blood of kings ran in his veins. One thing was certain, as even Thomdor had to admit: He was a determined and charismatic leader of men. Time and again the baron had drawn up for an attack, only to have the forces he faced melt away into the fog and the forest. And with every near defeat, Gondegal's legend grew, and with those exciting tales had grown his supporters. On the first of the year, he was unknown. Now, three weeks after Midsummer Eve, he had encouraged Arabel to revolt once more and made it the seat of his own nascent empire. [32]
In his declaration, Gondegal had laid out his new, nameless kingdom as running from the Wyvernwater northeast to Tilver's Gap, and from the desert of Anauroch southeast deep into Sembian territory. In reality, he ruled only as far as his sword would reach from the saddle of his ever-moving war-horse, but that did not lessen the effrontery of his demands. That declaration had been seven days ago, and for seven days, Arabel had held its breath as the "new king" readied his defences. For seven days, the forces of loyal Cormyr, bolstered by allies who stood to lose land to Gondegal's kingdom, tightened the net around Arabel. [32]
One of the mercenary captains, a rough barbarian from the lands north of Phlan, broke in with a snarl [32]
One thing the long history of this land has taught my family is that creating grudges only perpetuates our difficulties. [32]
Let me remind everyone present that this attack is no excuse for pillaging and looting. No one is to set any fires except by order. If the person fleeing from your sword is a civilian, he is a target you will not strike at, molest, or maim 'accidentally.' I'll consider that clearly understood by all of you, see that your men also clearly understand the punishment they'll face if they forget such things. [32]
A few of the minor houses have supported Gondegal, the Immerdusks and Indesms being the most prominent. The Marliirs, the largest Arabellan house, have remained loyal. Most who bear that proud name are under house arrest now, keeping a few of Gondegal's troops busy guarding prisoners rather than manning the walls. [32]
Arabel attack. High Horn Gate and northwest wall, while the mercenaries will make a sally against the South Gate, more to draw fire and force a committal of defenders than to earnestly take the gate. The bulk of the army, on the right flank, will move along the long southern wall. The intent is to make Gondegal's forces think the bulk of our army is moving to the East Gate, to attack there. In fact, the forces under the duke will move farthest east, the forces under the king will stand to the centre, and the forces commanded by the baron will assemble at the western end of the front. [32]
Wink and Kiss, tavern in Arabel, located along a section of the southern wall that is to be blown up by War Wizards. Was Baron Thomdor’s favourite tavern [32]
Citadel of Arabel [32]
Allied Sembian troops arrived to help Azoun conquer Arabel [32]
Old Jolithan Marliir (patriarch????) risked a pair of daughters as messengers. [32]
Gondegal, a half dozen of his closest aides, and the treasure he's pillaged for the past three months, all have suddenly gone missing from the Citadel. The surviving captains have their collective undergarments in the proverbial knot over this, but for all their hunting about the city, uproof and downcellar, there is no sign of their heroic master.The mages who allied themselves with Gondegal have already left the city by their own powers. The remaining leadership is split, but the larger faction supports freeing the Marliirs to plead for mercy with the king on their behalf. Vangerdahast patted his wide belly with both hands. "Return to the city, then, and pass this message on to the Marliirs: There will be a general amnesty, provided the gates are thrown open to the king at the first approach of his forces. Gondegal's men should be waiting, unarmored and unarmed, at the base of the Citadel. The king will pardon all who are there but hunt down the rest to their deaths. Can you get that message back? [32]
The spy was a young woman in dark cape and leathers. Nothing gleamed upon her save an oversized golden ring on one hand. Her dagger sheaths, one on each hip, were wrapped in dark leather. Her face was soft and cherubic. (Kamara????) [32]
Azoun was nearly slain on the eve of battle by a Thayvian wizardess who stole his seed and nearly stabbed him to death [32]
Gary Dallison Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 21:11:16
Cormyr Notes (1369 DR)
By Ed Greenwood & Jeff Grubb

-400 DR
Thauglor, King of the Forest Country [prologue]
Thauglor the Black [prologue]
Casarial, Thauglor’s youngest granddaughter, impetuous. Has a scar over her left eye (given her by Thauglor????). As youngest had always been spoiled [prologue]
Thauglor speaks Auld Wyrmish [prologue]
Kreston, Spawn of Casarial out of Miranatol, grandchild of Hesior, blood of the mighty Thauglorimorgorus, the Black Doom. 10 years old [prologue]
Every decade-black dragons of Thauglor’s bloodline whom he did not know personally. It had been at least a hundred summers since he'd last visited all of his descendants, children and grandchildren combined. Most of his own brood were properly deferential, as were their children. But these latest pups were almost insulting in their presumption and the cute boldness of youth would be little protection as they moved into gangly adolescence. [prologue]
Corpse wings, dragons that scavenge [prologue]
Cormyr - The lighter phandar and silverbarks dominated marshy spots, while the shadowtops and duskwoods rose like spires on the drier hills, and they in turn gave way as the land climbed to the cinnamon hues of gnarled felsul and coppery laspar that ringed the timberline [prologue]
Thauglor's land was bounded by mountains on three sides and a narrow inlet of the Inner Sea on the fourth. To the west rose the youngest of the mountain ranges, still sharp-toothed and newly crafted, its peaks sharp and forbidding. To the north was the largest range, a great buttress of stone against the failed and fallen wizard kingdoms beyond, an impassable wall made more hazardous by continual storms, whose flashing lightning lashed its flanks almost daily. Thunder ruled in the eastern mountains as well. Though tall, these peaks were more weathered, splintered by ages of rain and snow. This last range was broken by a number of low passes, where the forest spilled out into flat coastland beyond. Their peaks marked the eastern border of the lands of the Black Doom. All that lay between these mountains was his. The southern border of his lands was guarded by a slim, silvery arm of star carved sea, a drowned gulf born in violent skyfall so many eons ago that even Thauglor knew of it only through legends from his grave-gone elders. The shore was twisted and boggy, as if the land were slowly sinking into the island-dotted coast. A few great manyroots rose in their gnarled, defiant glory here, but the shore was more the domain of silverbarks, willows, and other water-loving things. For a dragon, it was a short hop to lands farther south, but these belonged to other wyrms, and the narrow sea made a suitable border. [prologue]
Thauglor ruled supreme. There were reds and blues in the mountains, some older even than the great black wyrm, but they were sluggish, elderly creatures, driven to slow and vague wakefulness only a few times a millennium by hunger and thirst. Generally, they gave the large black with the purple tinged scales a wide berth. The wyverns that nested around the lake at the heart of Thauglor's domain paid fealty and treasure to him and his brood. All other draconian beasts who came winging over the mountains paid their respects, and their tribute, or were driven off. [prologue]
Thauglor was getting old. With each passing year, his scales lightened, so much so that now he was more violet than ebony along the sinuous ridge of his spine. His eyes, too, though as unerring as ever, were shifting from yellow to a dusky purple. His naps were now lasting upward of a month, and when he awoke, it was with ravenous hunger. [prologue]
A pack of hellhounds had come down from the northern range again [prologue]
Tribes of northern goblins often hunted in these lands, and occasionally a band of Netherese refugees-gaunt, hungry, and powerless without their magic would try to cross his territory. Dwarves distrusted the woods from some long past racial trauma and would only risk crossing through a dragon's domain if there were rich metals to be found. [prologue]

-205 DR Year of Good Hunting
Horn tower-a tower that in turn soared up above the surrounding bare trees, stabbing proudly into the cloud-studded sky. Its peak was a huge, glowing crystal carved into the shape of a leaping flame. The crystal, glowing a brilliant blue against the riot of autumn colour, was lit in expectation of the guest. Iliphar Nelnueve used magic to carve the words Key'anna de Cormyr, read the runes: "We guard this wooded land." As a warning to goblins above the doorway. (is this tower the same beacon tower in the King’s Forest????) [2]
House Amaratharr had won many battles against the dragonkin of Thauglor thanks to the magic of Iliphar Nelnueve [2]
The two smaller dragons, one red - Mistinarperadnacles, one blue - Gloriankithsanus, flanked Thauglor the great black-scaled beast a respectable few yards behind their liege. They were younglings, newly out of their shell, their colours as bright as the forest around them. That, too, was a sign of power from the dragon. He confidently chose inexperienced youths as his seconds. [2]
Thauglorimorgorus, Thauglor the Mighty and Thauglor the Black Doom. [2]
Cormyr has belonged to dragons before the hatching of my (Thauglor) eldest known ancestor, and I have hunted here for a time that is long even to the proudest elf. For almost all of those passing years, I have defended these great forests against the depredations of other wyrmkin, and through hard battle have come to dominate them-the redscales, the mighty blues, and the greenwings such that now, and for a thousand years before now, my word is and has been law from the eastern peaks to the western and from the northern range to the narrow sea. [2]
By blood and by Feint of Honor, I am master," snarled Thauglor [2]
Feint of Honour are between dragons, to settle their differences without killing one or both parties. A battle until one is subdued and surrenders to the other. [2]
The muscles bunched beneath Thauglor’s jaws. Two sacs inflated along his neck, just behind the head, where, the elf lord knew, the black acidic bile of the dragon was stored [2]
Five great reptilian skulls. The skulls were set with amethysts along their brows. One had as few as three stones, one as many as twenty. The skulls had massive fangs in their upper jaws, but no horns. They were the remains of green dragons. The gems on their foreheads represent the elves who lost their lives fighting the creatures, one for each elf. [2]
Thauglor lost the Feint of Honour to Iliphar, Mistinarperadnacles fled (and presumably would be punished or exiled????). He ceded control of the forests to the elves (not the swamps or mountains or bare hills) and he and his vassal dragons would not hunt the elves. Thauglor would need to sleep for a long time to recover from the wounds [2]

-75 DR Year of Leather Shields
Alea Dahast from Cormanthor, hunting in Cormyr, leading an attack on a human settlement by the coast (the site of modern day suzail????). The humans had killed elves of the Elian clan and despoiled the forest[4]
The old Lord of the Scepters always recommended calm, always recommended accommodation… always recommended negotiation. When the furry brutes had attacked the first elves they encountered, he'd recommended containment and observation. [4]
Typical humans were like orcs come down from the mountains-hunters seeking prey, refugees seeking settlement, merchants seeking stability. The great forest held no long-term lure for them, and when they saw that the land of trees was held by the elves, they drifted on, to wherever humans drifted on to. But these men were different. This breed of human cleared the forest, killing nearly all the trees. They piled the rent corpses of forest giants-and their own wastes-around their clearings and chased off the animals. And when they had done all this, they moved on to do it all again, in another part of the forest. [4]
The Elian clan of elves in Cormyr [4]
elven crossbow quarrels [4]
Baerauble Etharr, Netherese human, tall and lean, with a ratty reddish beard, can speak elvish very well, wizard [4]
Elvish language known as the True Tongue to the elves [4]
The Dalesmen spilling across the Dragon Reach, and the greedy or desperate from the wealthy merchant nations of the south. They know of this land of forests now-a rich, untamed hunting ground, with only a few elves to defend it. Ripe for the taking. [4]
the pressing of palms was a very human action [4]
the chimelike speech of the Netherese. [4]
Get more wolves. Feral ones, like dire wolves. And some owlbears, bugbears, and whatever other wood-dwelling horrors you can find. Not enough to burden the forest or make the hunting too perilous for your folk. Put them along the borders… particularly the eastern verges, near the human settlements. If humans see that there are dangerous creatures on the edges of the forest, they'll think worse beasts lurk in its depths. To some, this might be a peril to eradicate at all costs, but any man going near the forest will be so busy fighting the roaming beasts that very few humans will venture far inside the woods. And so, you have-again-your unspoiled hunting preserve. One can't possibly kill all the humans, but one can steer them aside. [4]

6 DR Year of the Firestars
Ondeth Obarskyr, arrived from the east (Impiltur) and found a glen strewn with uprooted trees and overgrown brush. Built a stockade and small huts (on the site where Baerauble was rescued by Alea Dahast). Formerly lived in Marsember. The iron tools-wedge, hammer, and axe-were the most important things Ondeth had carried with him from Impiltur. He had his skinning knife, of course, and had bought the boys short, heavy-bladed swords of Chondathan design, but if they were going to survive here, he'd have to do more than just hunt. He'd thought of getting a steel blade for the plow, but until the first crop came in, there was nothing to sell, and therefore nothing to buy with. Lost an older brother to a boar hunt back in Impiltur. Knows some two dozen men who might move from Marsember to his new hold. Comes from a family of many poets, heroes… and scoundrels [6]
Suzarra, wife of Ondeth Obarskyr. Does not like it in Cormyr, prefers it in Impiltur [6]
Rhiiman and Faerlthann, sons of Ondeth Obarskyr [6]
Everyone knew that using a lightning-struck tree in your home merely attracted more bolts from the blue. [6]
Villiam Obarskyr, Ondeth’s younger brother. Two days from now, the younger Obarskyr would begin the slow hike eastward to the rough-hewn, swampy port of Marsember, where the rest of his family would arrive. Married to Karsha (currently on her way from Impiltur to Marsember). Medaly his eldest daughter [6]
Marsember was no more than a muddy straggle of ramshackle houses clustered around a few piers [6]
Sembia. Southerners from Chondath held those towns, but it was said there were some eastern folk as well. [6]
North (of Suzail????). He'd heard the men up there had made their peace with the elves and agreed to settle the empty lands. [6]
Bad times beset the land where Ondeth came from (Marsember or Impiltur or both????). Plagues. Tyrants. Bad kings. [6]
The elves claim the wild forest, this part of the great forest known as Cormanthir-what you call the wolf woods, or Cormyr. Marsember is, as you may have noticed, a swamp. Leave the rothe-the forest buffalo. You can take enough deer for your settlement, but if you drive out the native herds, the elves will take their own measures. Take deadfall branches, not live wood for your fires and buildings… and I think they will let you stay. [6]
There are few goblins, and they keep well to the north of here (the Wolf Woods????) [6]
Ondeth knows of the sage Alaundo [6]
The Hunt, where the elves of Cormanthir hunt dangerous animals – such as a great owlbear twice as large as normal. [6]
the elf nobles, Ondeth knew their exalted rank at a glance. Their mounts were huge stags whose gilded antlers were laced with silver filigree and flew more than bounded. Proud riders bestrode them, lords and ladies of the forests in fine, flowing outfits of silklike finery, their silver and corn-colored hair streaming behind them in long braids. [6]
Iliphar Nelnueve. The elf lord had a long, ragged scar down one cheek and carried an ornate golden scepter topped with a glossy-polished amethyst. He wore a simple crown of some silvery metal. It consisted of a circlet with three spikes along the brow, each spike topped with another purple gem. [6]
If Iliphar's Hunting Court first saw you as a human intruder disputing some forest kill with an elven hunter, your dealings with elves would probably follow the trail of most humans-a long, descending spiral of testings that would end in the destruction of your homestead. This time, they'll remember a brave human who helped in the taking down of one of the last giant owlbears in the eastern reaches. [6]

16 DR Year of Distant Thunder
The farm was only a mile from Suzail, a small glade that Mondar Bleth had cleared to twice its original size. Three main buildings, one with a stone foundation, had stood here, and in this place Mondar had reared a prodigious supply of goats. All buildings now a smoking ruin, 10 men and women slain
Mondar Bleth, huge bearlike body. Mondar was as massive as a thundercloud, with a temper to match. He was already balding, but he kept a thick beard that reached nearly to his belt. His forehead was plowed with deep lines, and when he was in full fury, which was often, he could outbellow, outshout, and outargue any man in the colony, including Ondeth. It was generally agreed that by allowing Mondar to settle elsewhere, Ondeth was keeping a potential rival at a safe distance. Mondar's wife died giving birth to Arphoind
Mondar's sword, a huge, heavy-hafted blade
Two of the Bleths had survived this slaughter by being in Suzail at the time. Minda, Mondar's sister, had been a guest for dinner the previous night and had brought Arphoind, Bleth's youngest son, a strapling of all of eight winters, with her.
Minda Bleth, raven-tressed beauty. Had a secret tryst with Ondeth Obarksyr. The arrival of Mondar's sister, Minda, strained the new friendship between Mondar and Ondeth. She'd come to Suzail a year ago, as fair as her brother was rough-hewn. Her hair was the color of the darkest night, and her eyes glowed like bits of silver. Her face was unmarked and had a golden sheen to it. She was as tall as her brother and Ondeth and, like her brother, wouldn't take no for an answer. Even if Mondar disliked the attention Minda paid to the older farmer, he could do little to dissuade her.
It had been four years since Suzara had left them, tired of the wolves and the mosquitoes and, most of all, the endless work. She had already slept with others, and Ondeth had slept with many before Minda Bleth
The centre of the settlers' universe was Suzail, and the centre of the Suzail was Ondeth's manor The town, named after Ondeth Obarskyr's now departed wife, had slowly crept its way up the low hillside behind the original glade. The lumbering had been carefully supervised by Baerauble Elf-friend, with the felled trees being used immediately for housing. Most of the original homesteads had been given over to farming, the buildings Ondeth and Villiam had erected now home to tools and coops and shearing floors. Newly arriving families moved upward, inside the sprawling wooden wall that embraced the entire hill. Its height was claimed by the Obarskyrs by right of first arrival, and none argued with that. Three hundred and fifty or so folk called Suzail home, a muster that could live in a single block of a packed city in Chondath or Impiltur, or even in the mercantile outposts of nearby Sembia. A dock had been built four seasons ago, allowing ships safe moorings along the rocky coast. Previously waterborne visitors had to make landfall at Marsember, then trek along the coast to Suzara's City, Suzail. Merchants were now bypassing the swampy town in favor of the Obarskyr settlement. Baerauble's contacts with the elves made it possible for the port to ship out elven cloth, nuts, and beast hides, receiving in return tools, weapons, and various fine mongery from the human cities on more southerly shores of the Sea of Fallen Stars.
Ondeth's manor looked out over the city. Despite its two floors, it was a low, solid rampart of rough-cut stone and gray slate shingles, set partially into the hillside behind. Its stone foundation had been the first in Suzail, and envy of it had spurred the other families to build likewise. Ondeth had talked of raising some towers at the ends of his home but had been too busy to commit time enough to do so. When he built the manor, most of it was a single great hall, and here most of the populace of Suzail was wont to gather in the early evenings around the great fire pit in the center of the chamber. The families would come to cook their evening meals, gossip, and trade tales, lies, and legends. With the rising popularity of Suzail, even an occasional bard or minstrel would join those at the fireside, to swap sweet tales in exchange for a roof to sleep under.
Faerlthann. In the new settlement, he'd grown to be taller than his father, his muscles hardened by work, his face tanned by the sun, and his eyes keen. And there was something else in those eyes from time to time: a faraway misty look the young man would get when Baerauble would visit, with his tales of elven kingdoms and their wild hunts.
Mondar had shown up six years ago, hard behind Jaquor and Tristan, the Silver brothers. But while the twin Silvers had agreed to settle within the confines of the already cleared area, Mondar would have none of that. There was a glade a mile northwest of the main settlement, little more than a clearing burnt bare by some elder wyrm or lightning strike. It had water and wood close at hand, and the place was far enough away from Suzail to allow privacy and close enough to afford protection. Mondar and Baerauble hated each other instantly, of course, and the elder Bleth did not miss an opportunity to goad the elf-friend. Yet despite this and Mondar's rapid clearing of the glade, the sky did not fall, the elves did not attack, and the world did not end. Suzail continued to grow, and others besides Mondar began to say that perhaps the elven restrictions were just grand old words, that perhaps by now the elves had come to terms with humans moving into their lands.
Jaquor and Tristan the Silver brothers. Settled within the confines of Suzail. Have daughters and a growing family
Mondar Bleth and Ondeth Obarskyr were friends
Ondeth held to the limits set down by Baerauble, for there was still more than enough land within the rambling town wall. Still, a distance had grown between the old farmer and the wizard, and when Baerauble came to visit, he spent more time with Faerltbann and the youngsters than with his old friend.
Suzara had officially dissolved the marriage and remarried a Theskan merchant
Lathander and Tyche
Iliphar's court has been debating the fate of Mondar’s farm for some time (6 years). They destroyed it. Baerauble wanted Ondeth to lie and say the orcs destroyed it to stop war between human and elf
Rayburton has a daughter (from the Ring of Winter????)
Jolias Smye the smith has a wife heavy with her first child

26 DR Year of Opening Doors
The Court of Iliphar, Lord of the Sceptres, had set up a great pavilion on the site of Mondar's Massacre, now nearly a decade ago. The reason for their appearance here was as obvious as it was threatening. Few humans knew that the massacre had been more than a goblin raid, and it had become a cautionary tale against farming beyond the comfortable wooden palisade of Suzail. But around late fires, tongues wag, and more than a few folk had been told by their fathers in confidence to beware of the elves and not "be the fool that Mondar was." [10]
Ondeth had died yestereve, his great heart finally giving out after a life of hard work and harder revels. He was struck down while trying to help Smye the smithmaster unmire his cart on a muddy road. Ondeth lingered a single day, weakly making his final farewells to friends and family. [10]
Minda Bleth and Ondeth had married, and Faerlthann had come at last to accept her as his father's love, if not as his rightful mother. [10]
Arphoind Bleth, now sixteen, had been taken into the household but kept his family name in honor of Mondar. [10]
Baerauble wasn't present when Ondeth died, but that didn't surprise Faerlthann. He'd seen the mage only a dozen times since the day they burned Mondar, and each time the wizard had gone behind firmly closed doors with Ondeth to deal with some matter of Suzailan import. [10]
Ondeth's passing came at midnight. Wood was gathered and laid in a towering pyre at the foot of the Obarskyr hills, below the expanded manor house. The old farmer's body was dressed in a saffron gown,. and his ancient hammer and sledge were laid on his chest. When the first rays of the sun struck Suzail, the wood was set ablaze, and Ondeth's spirit was sent to join his brothers' and Mondar's in the halls of the gods. [10]
a party of a dozen elven hunters commandeered a tavern five years back [10]
Faerlthann Obarskyr. At his hip swung Mondar's heavy-hafted sword, now his own, which had gained a name in the past decade: Ansrivarr, the elvish word for "memory." [10]
Iliphar’s court and throne. A tripartite throne stood on the far side of the pavilion. It did not look crafted so much as grown there, for it seemed rooted firmly in the earth itself, the high seats reached by a set of low, broad crystalline steps that glistened like pools of melted ice. The right-hand seat was occupied by a stern-looking elf in full armor, the fine links of his silver mail flowing to match his lean body. In the left-hand seat was an elven woman, her flowing gown the same shade of green as Baerauble's robes. In the center sat the tallest and eldest of the elves. He was a wan, thin creature, to Faerlthann's eyes as ancient as the forest itself… or more. This elf's eyes gleamed like bright gems at the bottom of great, sunken pits, and his skin possessed a sallow luminescence, strengthened by the light filtering through the fabric of the pavilion. The ancient elf was not unmarked, down one side of his face ran a single great scar. On his brow, the elf wore a circlet of gold, its three tall spires set with purple amethysts. Othorion Keove, on the right, believes that with Ondeth's passing, our agreement is null and void, and Ondeth's people should be driven into the sea. Alea Dahast on the left, who once hunted men in this forest, now believes you should be allowed to remain, but confined to your current warren. Were you to spread farther or increase your numbers beyond reasonable bounds, you would have to be destroyed, or else we would be destroyed. [10]
There were tales of plague and lurking sea monsters in Marsember, and boats were passing that city by, to moor at smaller but cleaner Suzail. [10]
Turcassans and Merendils These were recent arrivals from the south, where folk held low opinions of both elves and wizards. [10]
peace bonds that would prevent their swords from being swiftly drawn again. [10]
Othorion Keove has an elven blade that shimmered with its own light, and small arcs of lightning sizzled along its blade. [10]
this land is not as it was a third of thy lifetime ago. In many ways it is tamer, with many of the more dangerous beasts hunted out, never to return. The forest buffalo were diminished before you even arrived, and Ondeth himself proved his mettle against one of the last giant owlbears. Even the dragons are not what they were, the greatest sleep their lives away far from contact with any of us. And we, too, grow fewer, as more elves travel north to rejoin our cousins of Cormanthor. The wolves survive, of course, and the deer and the great cats, but, no, the land is not as it was. It would be folly to deny that. [10]
Arphoind's kneeling pledge was followed by those of the Silver brothers and their sons. Then the Turcassans and the Merendils knelt, and one of the Rayburtons. All swore their fealty to House Obarskyr and named Faerlthann their lord. [10]
Iliphar Nelnueve gave Faerlthann his own crown, the silver one with three spires topped by a purple amethyst (are the amethysts made from the purple bird that was shattered in Thauglor’s mouth????) [10]
Baerauble was ordered to be advisor to Faerlthann Obarskyr. He protested because he had a wife (Alea Dahast) and children and grandchildren [10]
The elder elf muttered a few words in a tongue Faerlthann did not recognize, then placed his hands on either side of the wizard's brow, as if he, too, were being crowned with an invisible helm. There was a brief, soft glow where the elf's hands touched Baerauble's face (he laid a geas on Baerauble). [10,12]

245 DR Year of the Dun Dragon
Sagrast Dracohorn, nobleman of Cormyr and steward of the Royal House of Obarskyr. Turned traitor and meeting enemies to the crown at the Ram and Duck inn. I represent a small group of nobles of… middling power," said Sagrast, "mostly families who have arisen since the days of Faerlthann himself. We have come to see things the same way, because what we see, however bleak, is the truth of things. The kingdom has been wounded by a mad king, and now it may be destroyed by a weak king. The elder nobles serve out of tradition, but some seek to break up the kingdom and seize their own territories. Our small houses would be swallowed in such strife, yet we cannot convince the crown of the dangers. [12]
Ram and Duck inn, rough hewn and ill kept, one of the few remnants of Suzail’s early days. Timbers were exposed, with muddy patches of dried wattle crumbling between them. Most of the furniture had been broken and inexpertly repaired several times. None of the line of peg-hung mugs on the wall matched. Every tread on the floor reverberated through the loose floorboards of the building. [12]
mad Boldovar and now poor, inept Iltharl, kings of Cormyr [12]
Arabel, most distant settlement in Cormyr from Suzail [12]
Suzail. Most of the buildings were wood-and-wattle, with rough thatched roofs. A few builders on the hillside had taken to using stone for the foundation and lower floors. Only after several goblin raids on the city and complaints from the soldiers about trying to fight in the thick smoke of a wall set alight by brush-carrying foes had Iltharl approved replacement of the wooden palisade with a real stone wall.
Faerlthann's Keep was stone, of course, from shallow dungeon to highest battlement. The great tower, seat of the Obarskyr power. The keep's windows were barred slits, a memory of Boldovar's time. Courtiers quarters were in the outer ring of the keep. Deeper within the keep was the Great Hall, and beyond that a small antechamber leading into the official throne room. The throne room had been part of the original house built on this site, over the long years, the rest of the stonework had grown up around it and consumed it. Along the walls hung tapestries and a few battle banners. Along one side of the hall, a small series of broad steps led up to a single throne. [12]
Baerauble the Venerable, High Wizard of Cormyr, sprawled across the chair like a discarded child's doll, all elbows and knees. The mage had always been thin-nay, emaciated, a scarecrow of a wizard. His beard showed only the slightest streaks of its original red, and his hairline had retreated to the crown of his head. His eyes were as cold and ancient as a dragon's. He was dressed, as ever, in the forest green that had become known as "his" colour, but the cut of his robes was archaic, harking back-like this tavern-to older and better times in Cormyr. [12]
King Boldovar died 3 winters back (242 DR????). Boldovar had perished three summers ago, after gutting one of his consorts. Clutching vainly at her slayer, the dying woman had dragged him over the battlements of Faerlthann's Keep. Baerauble had been abroad at the time. [12]
"There have been studious kings before," noted Baerauble. "Rhiiman the Glorious, who first pushed back the borders of the forest, and Elder Tharyann, Boldovar's father, who saw the leave-taking of the last great elven families. [12]
Rhiiman slew the last great red dragon of the Wyvernwater, and Tharyann put down the first rebellion of Arabel. This Iltharl is a wan, pale king, moved by his courtiers and consorts. The people are growing very restive, and those of us charged with maintaining the realm have become… extremely concerned. [12]
There are goblins and orcs on the road. Bandits and thieves join them, and they grow bolder by the day, while the King's guards hug the tower like children afraid of shadows. Arabel is in rebellion once more, and Iltharl has let it go its own way. There are shortages now in the markets. Some matrons are now wearing daggers openly at their belts to walk the streets and shop in safety. And the Purple Dragon has been seen in the ruins of abandoned Marsember. The mage made a harrumphing noise. "Every time someone needs an ill omen, the Purple Dragon seems to appear. Usually it is a red dragon espied in moonlight or a small black seen at a distance. And people see all sort of things in plague-ridden Marsember. All else you say is true, do not muddle it with fantasy. [12]
Many of the lesser nobles are taking greater liberties, and some are now refusing to pay their taxes and raising militias of their own. The trio of Silver families-Huntsilver, Crownsilver, and Truesilver, all the traditional eyes and long arms of the king-are too close to the throne to see the danger. Mewling toadies, they play to Iltharl's ego for his favour and spend their time thanking the gods that Iltharl is not Boldovar the Mad. But even the Mad King held the reins of state firmly when he was in his right mind. The Silvers cannot see that the realm is crumbling around them! [12]
King Iltharl has a sister Gantharla. Iltharl has been barren-with his wife, and among his consorts. Iltharl was decked in gold and white, his normally immaculate robes covered with a bronze breastplate and leg guards. The plate and guards were chased and sculpted into images of fantastic beasts and stood out in bold relief. Ceremonial, thought Sagrast, and the thought struck him that Iltharl had probably never owned a real suit of armor or had any cause to use it. On his head he wore the Crown of Faerlthann, the elven circlet that commemorated the origin of the realm. [12]
Gantharla. A fine, strong young woman," Baerauble agreed, nodding. "The blood of the Obarskyrs runs strong in that one. And some fear she is truly Boldovar's daughter, brash and impulsive. She has done well in patrolling the Western Marches with her foresters, and I noticed that the marches were noticeably absent in your list of woes. Gantharla was in her foresters' leathers, a mottled green from neck to foot, with a hood of the same material thrown back from her head. A shirt of elven chain, fine-linked and tinted green, tightly hugged her torso. Her hair, a brilliant red, was short and mannish. Her eyes gleamed, and Sagrast thought of Boldovar's madness. [12]
the Dragon Throne is held through primogeniture. The Crown of Cormyr has always passed to the eldest surviving son. [12]
Kallimar Bleth would be a suitable husband for Gantharla. Kallimar is Mondar reborn-large, dark-haired, and proud. And like Mondar, he is crude, violent, bad-tempered, and vicious. Remember, I knew the first Bleth to walk Cormyr two and half centuries ago. Do you really think that Gantharla, who's at home in the saddle and a leader of border foresters, would be interested in such a man? [12]
I (Baerauble) have been charged with protecting the head that wears the Cormyrian crown, even if the mind within that head is evil, mad, or ineffectual. The elves charged me so and laid their geas upon me to enforce that charge. Typical elven narrow vision, really. A great people, but unable to see beyond their own long life spans. So when Tharyann outlived most of his own spawn and left only poor, mad Boldovar as his heir, I protected the new king and sought to treat his madness as best I could with spells and poultices. And he lasted longer than he had any right to, until he fell victim to his own rages and passions. Boldovar left behind Iltharl, a spindly child, and Gantharla, who has redeemed the Obarskyr bloodline in many eyes and caused others to worry that she is truly her father's daughter. I know she's more popular in the western settlements than the king himself. I believe all the, ah, great thinkers among our nobles were hoping that Iltharl would see fit to spawn an heir and then conveniently perish of Marsember Pox before he had to rule. The fates did not allow it, and my own binding does not allow me to act against him. As you say, Iltharl is not a bad man. Not bad in the same way as Boldovar was. If anything, Boldovar was too much a descendant of Ondeth and Faerlthann, and Iltharl was too little. Perhaps some of us, myself included, saw too much of Boldovar's madness and sought overly hard to protect his son from it. And protected him so well he's proved to be ineffective as a leader. We ourselves have crafted an insufficient king. I find it amusing that so many people, particularly those of noble blood, respect Boldovar more than his son. Boldovar was murderous, ravenous, rapacious, and insane, yet he was strong and forceful, and his faults are forgiven for this. Iltharl is thoughtful and mild and caring, probably the most learned of any of the Kings of Cormyr, but he is reviled for his weakness and timidity. I had to foil five plots against Boldovar's life in his entire reign. I've had to thwart that many attempts against Iltharl's life this year alone. [12]
Muscalians, noble house of Cormyr [12]
Western Marches [12]
The Crown of Faerlthann, the elven circlet that commemorated the origin of the realm (the one formerly belonging to Iliphar Nelnueve) [12]
King Iltharl abdicates and crowns Queen Gantharla, first Queen of Cormyr [12]
Iltharl journeys north to Cormanthor to be with the elves (Baerauble arranges it) [12]
I (Baerauble) was there when Faerlthann was crowned, and I swore then to serve the Crown of Cormyr, not the King of Cormyr. So long as the crown rests on a head Obarskyr-born, Cormyr endures. [12]

376 DR Year of the Leaping Hare
Moriann, Tharyann, Boldovar the Mad, Iltharl, Gantharla, Roderin the Bastard, Thargreve the Lesser [14]
Baerauble was a teacher of the rote-and-repetition school, whether the subject was history or spell theory. Amedahast hated it. The crowned heads. The noble families. The lands about the Sea of Fallen Stars, past and present. The dead and dry tales of the Cormyrean legend. All the detritus that must be learned for her to serve as his scribe and apprentice in the court of King Anglond. Baerauble needed a scribe these days. The wizard was skeleton-thin now, and his head was as smooth as glass. The only hair he had left consisted of a few long, white strands that marked where his beard and eyebrows had once been. He needed a gnarled staff to walk, had to be carried by chair from place to place, and was severely taxed by spellcastings. He needed at least an assistant, and at best an heir. Cormyr had always had its High Wizard and would need a new one in days not long to come. [14]
Amedahast, Baerauble’s heir and assistant, summoned from distant Myth Drannor at Baerauble's request. The young woman had Baerauble's blood in her, that much was certain. She was lean in form and sharp-featured in face, her light red-blonde hair gathered in an ornate, ordered braid halfway down her back. She claimed Baerauble's mantle through his mating with the elven ancestor of the family line, Alea Dahast. Amedahast was fully human, the result of many years of mortal blood watering down her elven ancestry. Even so, she had a fey, dangerous look about her. [14]
Arabel has seceded from the kingdom three times [14]
Marsember has been abandoned twice [14]
Faerlthann First-King [14]
The original keep had sprawled in a more or less haphazard fashion along the rolling hillock that dominated Cormyr. Most of the aristocrats, courtiers, and bureaucrats had been banished a hundred years ago for some rebellion or scheme or faux pas and now occupied a sprawling tumbledown chaos of stone buildings at the base of the hill called the Noble Court, or simply the court. The keep was home to the royal family, the important offices of state, the treasury and mint, and the court wizard. The Obarskyr castle loomed over the surrounding countryside, much like the Obarskyrs themselves. [14]
In the distance, rising above the trees, she saw roofs of colored slate, the homes of some of the highest-ranking nobles. There lived the Truesilvers, Crownsilvers, and Huntsilvers, surrounded by a sprinkling of lesser lights: Turcassans, Bleths, and the upstart Cormaerils and Dheolurs. [14]
Prince Azoun son of Anglond [14]
Soldier's Green. Used for marshaling the militia and drilling the palace guards in large-scale manoeuvres. Originally the site of Mondar Bleth’s farm which was destroyed by goblins (secretly elves). That was where Keolan Dracohorn of Arabel gained the family name killing a blue dragon (actually Keolan Dracohorn found a dead young blue dragon there, drove his sword into the cooling body, and told his version of the tale so often that it became the family legend), and where Gantharla stationed her foresters when she marched on Suzail and seized the throne from her brother (really he abdicated) [14]
Arabel. Almost as old as Suzail," said Azoun. "Originally a logging encampment of folk who moved in when the elves moved out. It's been part of Cormyr, off and on, for about three hundred years. It would petition to join, or be conquered, or be absorbed in one generation, then grow restive and break away the next. It's officially part of the nation right now, but it has always been-and remains-very independent. The saying in court is 'A rabid kobold could start a rebellion in Arabel.' Of course, we don't say that around folk from Arabel. They're a little touchy about it, to say the least. [14]
The ruins of Marsember are regularly used by pirates, and periodically adventuring groups are secretly hired to clear them out. (does that mean Marsember is ruined at this time????) [14]
The High Horn was the first fortification among the Storm Horns and remains the largest, with dwarves emigrating from Anauria being hired to hollow out the mountain itself. [14]
Baerauble had outlived all but the eldest of elves, enhanced by his magic and enchantments. Even in his frail state, he seemed invulnerable and eternal. I serve the crown, not the head it rests on. I have lived for over four hundred years, and in that time I have seen this nation grow from a single encampment to something worthwhile. And if continuing that achievement means doing my best in the face of adversity, so be it. We do not rule here, pupil. But we do protect, and that means protecting men whom we might otherwise judge weak or foolish, because there is always hope with the next generation. 'Do what you can,' I always have said, 'and it will be enough. [14]
King Anglond and Queen Eleriel [14]
Amedahast was presented to King Anglond and Queen Eleriel and swore fealty to the crown on Symylazarr, the sword also known as the Fount of Honour. [14]
a chatty young Turcassan who was extolling his virtues in bear-slaying [14]
House Merendil ruling matron was a vengeful, petty old woman, and Amedahast vaguely recalled a story that she had caught Azoun stealing apples as a lad. Lady Merendil had three daughters [14]
Lady Merendil knows of a group of foreign merchants. Let us call them the Steel Lords," she said, smiling. "They have been hurt by some of King Anglond's taxes and want to reopen negotiations. These Steel Lords think the king needs a message sent to him. I think young Azoun needs a lesson taught to him as well. Perhaps we can kill two birds with one stone. The plan would be to capture the young prince and simply hold him for a few days, then let him go when the Steel Lords have their concessions. A simple transaction. And if it becomes clear that his wenching brought him to this pass, I'm sure His Majesty will keep Azoun on a shorter leash in the future.[14]
Cormyr has been blessed never to have a truly evil king. Mad, yes. Insufficient, yes. Greedy, bad, violent, petty, yes, yes, yes, yes. And lust-driven… oh, my, yes. But the Obarskyrs have been blessed with never having an evil king. The elves did well when they let the Obarskyrs stay. [14]
Lord Crownsilver's epic treatise on rebuilding Marsember. He'd get the bulk of the farmland if it were truly re-established. And his cousins in the Truesilver clan would benefit if we ever finally got rid of the pirates and smugglers once and for all. So, the Silver families are straight-ahead on this, but need the support of the Dracohorns, Bleths, and Turcassans, who don't want to see them get any stronger. And then the newer houses, like the Cormaerils, are in the [14]
Lady Merendil organised an assassination attempt on Prince Azoun, Amedahast foiled it and Lady Merendil is probably halfway to the Chondathan colonies of Sembia by now to rejoin her daughters," the mage said smoothly, old and knowing eyes on hers, "but we'll send a message ahead on the off chance we can snare her. That was foolish, trusting that you could take them on by yourself, but I suppose you wanted to prove you could do it [14]
432 DR Year of the Sea Princes
Elvarin Crownsilver, female, noble [16]
A plague came first, borne by merchants from Marsember, decimating the folk of the countryside and turning bright Suzail into a charnel house where the dead lay in heaps on the streets. At first the priests fought it as best as they could, but when the sickness spread so fast and they had only so many healing spells and so many prayers left, the holy folk chose to keep their healings for themselves. A bad decision, since the city dwellers had more swords. When the dust cleared, there were no priests to be found save those of Talona, who spread the plague further. Then dragons descended on Suzail and Arabel and every small encampment from the mountains to the sea. Great blues settled upon the fields and tore apart houses, and massive reds laid fiery waste to entire regions. Greens raided the few ships and caravans that sought to reach Cormyr. Even the mythical Purple Dragon was reported in an attack on the western settlements. Arabel was gone in a night, this latest rebellion championed by a "Merchants' Revolutionary Committee." But now other holds and homesteads had risen and rebelled as well. It was hard to send men to aid the beleaguered crown when half the population was dying and the other half fighting dragons in the fields. Crown agents were killed, and government coffers looted. Then the orcs arrived, driven south by some nasty battle in the Stonelands. Normally such a threat would bring Arabel back into the kingdom, but now there was little in the way of a Cormyrean army to send aid. The goblin-kin seized the heart of the King's Forest. And when King Duar set out to defeat the orcish army, his own father-in-law, Melineth Turcassan, sold the city of Suzail to the pirates for five hundred sacks of gold. His Majesty destroyed the largest of the orcish armies, but returned to find his throne stolen and the gates of his city barred against him. Worse, the pirate lord, Magrath the Minotaur, kept the crippled city as his prize and plundered the treasury for mercenaries to expand his reach into the rest of Cormyr. That was three years ago, and in three years, those loyal to the crown had seen their numbers ebb-from battle losses, from treachery, and from raw despair. [16]
Many of the nobles, Crownsilver included, had shipped their families north to the Dales or west to Waterdeep. The loyal nobles broke into smaller groups, and still smaller bands. Duar's present band numbered only twenty. Elvarin Crownsilver and her cousin Glorin Truesilver. Jotor Turcassan, who had broken with the rest of his treacherous family, Omalra Dracohorn, and Dintheron Bleth. The men were the last of the Purple Dragons, their adventuring group from before everything collapsed. The rest of their ragged band were non-noble swordsmen and retainers. And King Duar, of course, and Amedahast. [16]
King Duar was a giant even among Obarskyrs, but his great, muscular shoulders seemed weighed down by more than the crown he still wore. The betrayal of Melineth had almost broken him, and it would take a long time for him to truly recover. [16]
The death of the Turcassans later that year, at the hands of their treacherous allies [16]
Orblyn, the Edge of Justice, a sword crafted for King Duar by Amedahast. [16]
The orcs and goblins soon learned that this was not a land to settle in and retreated to the north. The dragons, too, had gone, returning to whatever slumber engulfed them after a rampage. And while Magrath the Minotaur put a price on Duar's head higher than what he'd paid for Suzail itself, he had few takers among the fearful common folk. [16]
Word came from Elvarin’s cousin, Agrast Huntsilver, that the High Horn had fallen into their hands, and the military units there were willing to throw in with the king. But only if Duar could produce a victory, and produce it fast. Crownsilver, His Majesty, and the mage frowned over the maps for all one long day before choosing the site of the attack. It was central to the kingdom, lightly guarded, and, most importantly, it was held by a noble family that had thrown in with Magrath's pirates: House Dheolur. Amedahast and Duar chose Dheolur because Magrath might be there (which he was), allowing them to win a victory and potentially capture the pirate leader in one go. [16]
Duar's own grandfather had elevated the Dheolurs to nobility, and they'd spent the next three generations plotting and planning and scheming. They gained the right to put their stockaded settlement in the heart of the forest, and then did everything in their power to undermine the crown. When Suzail was seized, House Dheolur swore fealty to Magrath in an instant. [16]
Dheolur was surrounded with a stout stockade, rising protectively around the warehouses and homes of House Dheolur. The traitor house. The place needed the protection of its wall, for even in the best of times, goblins and other monsters came wandering out of the King's Forest. Inside now would be Lord Dheolur, his loathsome and reptilian sister Pella, and Lady Threena, a Cormaeril who'd married into the household. Of the lot, Threena was the only one worth more than a bucket of warm suet. The feast hall would also be the main warehouse, emptied for the revel. It stood to the right-hand side of the stockade, facing Dheolur Manor on the left, a large and ugly sprawl of pretentious turrets and wings built on the ruins of a temple that once stood there. And whose temple had that been? Elvarin thought for a moment. Moander, Threena Cormaeril had told her. Some minor and malicious deity of rot and decay. Dheolur was surrounded by low, peaty bogs and patches of marsh. This, more than any stockade wall, served it as protection. The rebellious nobles had ordered the forest cut back a hundred yards in all directions but had not maintained their vigilance since that burst of good sense. Already ferns and spindly saplings were growing in the blasted land. Still, one had a clear view of the stockade, the gate-house, and a crudely built watchtower. [16]
Dhedluk the farmer helped King Duar and his forces take Dheolur and slay Magrath the Mighty [16]
Amedahast, High Mage of the Wolf Woods [16]
Lord Dheolur, resplendent in black plate armour brought all the way from Chondath. The chased and fluted armour was Dheolur's pride and joy, his blade was long and slightly curved [16]
Pella Dheolur’s palms. Instead of unbroken, cupped skin below her fingers, Pella Dheolur's flesh was split with twisted mouths filled with sharp teeth and framed with oozing green lips. Elvarin struggled frantically and turned her head to one side, but Pella brought her open, toothy palm down on the Crownsilver's bare cheek. Elvarin screamed as needle-sharp teeth bit into her flesh. Pella's haglike laughter rose harsh and shrill around her. Pella was burned to death by Amedahast’s magic [16]
Magrath the Mighty was slain by King Duar [16]
Threena Cormaeril dashed down the steps and embraced the bloody Duar. The force of their laughing embrace spun the weary king around, and he almost fell over. Threena was the inside agent in Dheolur that let Duar and his forces into the hold [16]

629 DR Year of the Empty Hearth
Thanderahast, newest member of the Brotherhood of the Wizards of War. Amedahast was his seven-times great aunt. His relationship to Amedahast was distant but distinct, though there were few wizards in the line. Indeed, Thanderahast would rather be picking through the ruins of ancient Asram and Hiondath or studying in the elven libraries of Myth Drannor than playing spy on the lonely roofs of Suzail. [18]
Luthax, senior officer in the Brotherhood of the Wizards of War. Luthax was mean clear through to the bone, and he obviously enjoyed assigning the younger mage the most unpleasant and difficult of tasks and telling others, including Amedahast, of his failures. Most of the court already thought Thanderahast was a fool, thanks to Luthax's slander. Burly wizard, senior mage in the kingdom behind Amedahast, was the Castellan of Magic and the effective leader of the Brotherhood of the Wizards of War. Yet he was a nasty customer, unctuous and fawning to his betters, boisterous and bragging to his equals, and Gehenna-on-a-plate to those he thought his inferiors. Like junior officers. Like Thanderahast. The robes hid most of his paunch, and the hearth accentuated the deep crags in his face and over-large nose, making him look all the more serious and wise. His beard was long and reddish-brown, and it was said he shaved his head daily to make himself look more sage and puissant. [18]
Baerauble the Venerable [18]
the royal castle, rebuilt, along with most of the rest of Suzail after the Pirate Years, Castle Obarskyr sprawled over the low hillocks, surrounded by broad lawns and concealed redoubts. No one would sneak up on the Obarskyrs again. [18]
Amedahast was away. [18]
Luthax’s actions had been even more intriguing. Mysterious comings and goings, particularly with the other noble houses. Sudden "retirements" of high members of the order, and the promotions of Luthax's friends to brotherhood offices. The junior officers and lesser mages were being treated more as pawns than as students. [18]
Cats were everywhere, it seemed. The High Magess had imported them after the last plague from Marsember, and their presence seemed to have acted as a talisman, protecting the city from other such diseases. [18]
Amedahast favored cats, and during visits to his notable ancestor, Thanderahast, had noted that there were always about a dozen running free in her chambers at any one time. If they weren't hissing at each other over stacks of spellbooks, they were regarding the young guest scornfully from high, secure shelves, or dancing their way through forests of glass alembics and other delicate instruments. [18]
King Draxius Obarskyr, on the other hand, did not like cats. It was no ill experience or sneezing sickness that motivated him, folk said, just a disdain for their familiarity and their lack of devotion. If cats would act like dogs, the king would have no problem with them. Amedahast remembered that the king had once banned cats from the castle, until the vermin grew so numerous that the cooks complained. [18]
black cat, thin and Untherian in origin [18]
One of the noble Emmarasks, Elmariel, was a trusted crony of Luthax's, and so, of course, he had now risen to be almost as powerful as Luthax himself in the brotherhood. [18]
remember what happened when Baerauble passed on. Without a strong mage behind the throne, the kingdom quickly falls to ruin [18]
top six officers of the brotherhood were there, in their black and red robes festooned with eldritch symbols and self-awarded medallions. The rest were lesser nobles and some of the most prominent merchants in Suzail, but Thanderahast's eyes widened as he recognized members of the Bleth, Dauntinghorn, Illance, and Goldfeather houses, plus one or two minor Crownsilvers. A powerful group to be gathered in such a small room. Luthax stood by the fire, Elmariel Emmarask at his side. [18]
When magic was not strong," said Luthax, "the kingdom was not strong. Kings and princes are irrelevant to stable governance of the realm if good spellcrafting does not exist. This is one reason we formed the Brotherhood of the Wizards of War. Actually Amedahast formed the brotherhood, not Luthax. She did so to supplement her own abilities with a school of mages loyal to the crown, but also to keep track of the wizards who were appearing in greater and greater numbers in the Forest Kingdom. [18]
Draxius himself has passed harsh laws against further logging in the King's Forest, and denied the rights of the noble houses there. And while he conquered Arabel, he did not give those lands to the nobles who fought beside him, but rather left the noble families there in place, as if their defiant rebellions had never occurred. And this at the recommendation of the senile High Magess. [18]
Elmariel has returned from exploring the ruins of Netheril with an elder prize. A creature from ancient Netheril that is sent to attack King Draxius. a battered, teardrop-shaped head with a fanged mouth and blubbery hide, it is naturally invisible. Cats hate it [18]
a hulking guard in the violet and ivory of the Purple Dragons, standing before the door that led to the king's chambers [18]
The leaders of the Brotherhood of the Wizards of War attempted to assassinate King Draxius. Thanderahast foiled the attempt and helped slay the beast. Amedahast went to deal with Luthax and the leaders of the conspiracy. In the fight a huge magical explosion occurred. The conspiracy was ended with the death of the leaders (and presumably Amedahast????) when Amedahast’s staff exploded [18]
TheIriaeban Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 21:04:57
quote:
Originally posted by sleyvas

quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison


Interestingly enough, Baerauble called the invaders Dalesmen, from a time before the Dalelands existed. Which possibly means that the region of Jhaamdath from whence these invaders first came was called the Dale. Kind of makes sense since the same people also migrated to the Impiltur region where we also have the Great Dale.



There were dales before the dales that are currently known. The Standing Stone is raised in 1 DR - before any of the current dales exist. They just haven't made it into published Realmslore. Yet.

-- George Krashos



I don't want to know the history of Chippendale though... and Riverdale is too much drama



For those curious about the true history of Chippendale, talk to The Matron in The House of Amshadar. It is in Myth Akhmhaor on the 487th layer of The Abyss. If you need directions, ask a Cenobite. If you can't find one on Earth, there are one or more wooden puzzle boxes that will let you get in touch with them.

Or so I have heard....
sleyvas Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 19:57:44
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison


Interestingly enough, Baerauble called the invaders Dalesmen, from a time before the Dalelands existed. Which possibly means that the region of Jhaamdath from whence these invaders first came was called the Dale. Kind of makes sense since the same people also migrated to the Impiltur region where we also have the Great Dale.



There were dales before the dales that are currently known. The Standing Stone is raised in 1 DR - before any of the current dales exist. They just haven't made it into published Realmslore. Yet.

-- George Krashos



I don't want to know the history of Chippendale though... and Riverdale is too much drama
Wooly Rupert Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 18:36:22
Or maybe it's like I said, a mantle of some sort, voluntarily assumed.
Gary Dallison Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 16:15:33
Weirdly though Jorunhast refutes this geas saying he, Amedahast, and Thanderahast served out of loyalty and not a geas.

I wonder if they could be influenced without knowing it.

I'm sure i've read that Cormyr has its own special bit of weave linked to the obarskyrs and thauglor etc.

What if the geas placed upon Baerauble also affects those of his bloodline while they are in Cormyr. Maybe not forcing them into loyalty and obedience, but acting like an empathy spell of sorts, so that they feel rewarded for doing those things.

Just a thought
TheIriaeban Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 15:02:38
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison

Looks like the Royal Magicians are all geased. Salember discovered that all the royal mages were magically bound to protect the crown.

That means either the geas is inherited through blood or some item associated with the office, or it is recreated by each Royal Magician for his successor.



That makes sense since every member of the War Wizards are geased to protect the Crown/Cormyr as well (page 59 of the 2e Cormyr supplement).
Gary Dallison Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 13:15:53
Looks like the Royal Magicians are all geased. Salember discovered that all the royal mages were magically bound to protect the crown.

That means either the geas is inherited through blood or some item associated with the office, or it is recreated by each Royal Magician for his successor.
Gary Dallison Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 08:16:46
Kingdom of Ghouls is too far away unfortunately. I think even Eric's penchant for long distance hopping would be stretched to accommodate this.


As for the geas. Perhaps the original geas included a clause that bid the incumbent to ensure the realm was protected by the blood of Baerauble Etharr as long as an Obarskyr sat the throne. That would mean each High Wizard would then geas his successor, which would explain the similarity of extreme adherence to duty.

Baerauble could easily have passed it onto Amedahast. Amedahast did not have much time to do the same to Thanderahast, but could have done so through the cat. Thanderahast to Jorunhast is also an easy one. I think there is a break between Jorunhast and Vangerdahast but maybe Elminster added the geas and so Jorunhast fulfilled it by proxy.
TheIriaeban Posted - 23 Sep 2022 : 02:03:54
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison

That makes sense, but more specifically why that army of undead.

If you can call and command an army of fiends, then you could create an army of undead, there is no shortage of battlefields and mass graves in Tethyr.

But it sounds like these undead already existed and so joined willingly or were commanded, the question is why. Unfortunately i'm not sure that can be answered without knowing more about them, which is unlikely.






Could it be the Kingdom of the Ghouls (from George's recent writeup)? That fits in with a lot of what you have there: undead from a fallen kingdom, hates elves, and is tied to the lower planes.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 22 Sep 2022 : 21:29:25
I don't know of geas spells being passed on from one person to another.

I'd be more likely to suspect some sort of assumed mantle that conveyed benefits -- like longevity -- in return for service.
Gary Dallison Posted - 22 Sep 2022 : 19:52:27
In Cormyr a novel, Baerauble was laid under a geas by Iliphar Nelnueve.

This forced him to serve the crown of Cormyr, and kept him away from his family and love.

Then we have Amedahast, Thanderahast, Jorunhast, and Vangerdahast.

All of them behaved in exactly the same manner as Baerauble, serving the crown (not the king), protecting it from harm. Moreover they served their entire lives, without erring, for a very long time.

So the question is, did they all have a geas placed upon them. I find it unlikely that 4 separate individuals all felt the need to devote centuries of life to the same task, obeying the same rules.

Is it possible to inherit a geas, or did each wizard inflict a geas upon their descendant knowing the life they would have, was passing on the geas part of their geas, was it passed on through an item perhaps?
Gary Dallison Posted - 22 Sep 2022 : 19:46:08
That makes sense, but more specifically why that army of undead.

If you can call and command an army of fiends, then you could create an army of undead, there is no shortage of battlefields and mass graves in Tethyr.

But it sounds like these undead already existed and so joined willingly or were commanded, the question is why. Unfortunately i'm not sure that can be answered without knowing more about them, which is unlikely.


TheIriaeban Posted - 22 Sep 2022 : 15:59:08
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison
I dont think it necessarily needs to involve the idol at all (although are we talking about total annihilation or it just being broken up and left in pieces).

The quote points out that the army is made up of undead from an evil race that died long ago. These people drew power from an image of stone.

So the stone doesnt need to exist anymore. The people died long ago and are either reanimated by another group (twisted rune or drow????) Or have been undead for some time like a curse or revenge type thing.

I'm not sure why I thought of the idol, I think it was the the not human or Ogrish part ehich could leave room for goblinoid (orcs being relatively unknown in tethyr at this time). And the word idol is like an image but made out of something.

It kinda of works but I'm sure you have a much better idea in the works already.

The question is always why. Why attack then. Why use an army of undead and fiends. Why attack the elves.

I suppose it could have been a fiend from the fall of myth Drannor that wanted revenge on the Elmanesse. That explains why in that particular timeframe and why the elves. No idea why use undead though.



Just from a military point a view, it is the same reason why you would use drones: they don't eat (or at least don't die if you don't feed 'em), they don't sleep, and they are fairly easy to replace (some undead even self-replicate from their victims). The problem with undead is to make sure you maintain control so they don't wonder off and do their own thing.
Gary Dallison Posted - 22 Sep 2022 : 08:16:43
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison


Interestingly enough, Baerauble called the invaders Dalesmen, from a time before the Dalelands existed. Which possibly means that the region of Jhaamdath from whence these invaders first came was called the Dale. Kind of makes sense since the same people also migrated to the Impiltur region where we also have the Great Dale.



There were dales before the dales that are currently known. The Standing Stone is raised in 1 DR - before any of the current dales exist. They just haven't made it into published Realmslore. Yet.

-- George Krashos



There is mention of an Oak Dale in Veiled Dragon the novel, just in case you need another name. Its a present day mention but it could be a minor and unnoticed dale that survived from the first settlements.
Gary Dallison Posted - 22 Sep 2022 : 08:09:25
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison

An unusual legend of the wild elves speaks of a battle between the wild elves of Tethir and a race of evil beings (neither human nor ogrish) that draw their power from an image of stone. This race died long ago but they came back as undead with allies from the dark planes.

The elves were losing until a moon elf maid Soora Thea (with a sword of Myth Drannor) brought the lythari to the aid of the wild elves and destroyed the undead creatures and their abyssal allies.


Now this legend is after the fall of myth drannor. I wonder if the Image of Stone refers to the Gorge of the Fallen Idol and the Statue of Nomog Geaya.




Soora Thea can't be Zoastria if you tie it into that idol. The idol was destroyed and the hobgoblins scattered by Calimshan in -1931 DR. Way before Zoastria lived.

-- George Krashos




I dont think it necessarily needs to involve the idol at all (although are we talking about total annihilation or it just being broken up and left in pieces).

The quote points out that the army is made up of undead from an evil race that died long ago. These people drew power from an image of stone.

So the stone doesnt need to exist anymore. The people died long ago and are either reanimated by another group (twisted rune or drow????) Or have been undead for some time like a curse or revenge type thing.

I'm not sure why I thought of the idol, I think it was the the not human or Ogrish part ehich could leave room for goblinoid (orcs being relatively unknown in tethyr at this time). And the word idol is like an image but made out of something.

It kinda of works but I'm sure you have a much better idea in the works already.

The question is always why. Why attack then. Why use an army of undead and fiends. Why attack the elves.

I suppose it could have been a fiend from the fall of myth Drannor that wanted revenge on the Elmanesse. That explains why in that particular timeframe and why the elves. No idea why use undead though.
TheIriaeban Posted - 22 Sep 2022 : 02:23:43
quote:
Originally posted by George Krashos

quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison


Interestingly enough, Baerauble called the invaders Dalesmen, from a time before the Dalelands existed. Which possibly means that the region of Jhaamdath from whence these invaders first came was called the Dale. Kind of makes sense since the same people also migrated to the Impiltur region where we also have the Great Dale.



There were dales before the dales that are currently known. The Standing Stone is raised in 1 DR - before any of the current dales exist. They just haven't made it into published Realmslore. Yet.

-- George Krashos



Some of it is in the FR Wiki article about Daggerdale:

https://forgottenrealms.fandom.com/wiki/Daggerdale

George Krashos Posted - 22 Sep 2022 : 00:34:13
quote:
Originally posted by Gary Dallison


Interestingly enough, Baerauble called the invaders Dalesmen, from a time before the Dalelands existed. Which possibly means that the region of Jhaamdath from whence these invaders first came was called the Dale. Kind of makes sense since the same people also migrated to the Impiltur region where we also have the Great Dale.



There were dales before the dales that are currently known. The Standing Stone is raised in 1 DR - before any of the current dales exist. They just haven't made it into published Realmslore. Yet.

-- George Krashos

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