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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36142 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2006 :  17:29:47  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I really, really enjoyed this novel... The name fits it, as well. We see part of how Khelben became the Blackstaff, and, at the same time, we see the shaping of a new Blackstaff. It kinda makes me wonder if there was someone called the Blackstaff before Khelben...

And wow, was that a who's who of prominent mages, or what? Seeing so many mages that we've only seen in sourcebooks was great, too.

I'm really interested to see how this shakes up the status quo...

When's your next book, Steven?

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KnightErrantJR
Great Reader

USA
5402 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2006 :  17:59:06  Show Profile  Visit KnightErrantJR's Homepage Send KnightErrantJR a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

Anybody know anything more on Tulrun of the Tent (I checked Pages from the Mages and found a spell he made)? My curiosity was peaked by his reference.


I want to say he was mentioned in FR9 The Bloodstone Lands, but I've not flipped thru that one in years (and it's at home).



Page 60 of the Wilderness book of The North (2nd Edition) mentions Tulrun, and page 9 of Silver Marches further elaborates that he is a tiefling (as mentioned in the book)
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
36142 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2006 :  18:31:19  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by KnightErrantJR

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

Anybody know anything more on Tulrun of the Tent (I checked Pages from the Mages and found a spell he made)? My curiosity was peaked by his reference.


I want to say he was mentioned in FR9 The Bloodstone Lands, but I've not flipped thru that one in years (and it's at home).



Page 60 of the Wilderness book of The North (2nd Edition) mentions Tulrun, and page 9 of Silver Marches further elaborates that he is a tiefling (as mentioned in the book)



Maybe that was the reference I was remembering... The North is available as a free download from the Wizards downloads page.

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 19 Jul 2006 18:31:36
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ericlboyd
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
2007 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2006 :  19:04:47  Show Profile  Visit ericlboyd's Homepage Send ericlboyd a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by KnightErrantJR

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

Anybody know anything more on Tulrun of the Tent (I checked Pages from the Mages and found a spell he made)? My curiosity was peaked by his reference.


I want to say he was mentioned in FR9 The Bloodstone Lands, but I've not flipped thru that one in years (and it's at home).



Page 60 of the Wilderness book of The North (2nd Edition) mentions Tulrun, and page 9 of Silver Marches further elaborates that he is a tiefling (as mentioned in the book)



Maybe that was the reference I was remembering... The North is available as a free download from the Wizards downloads page.



There's a full write-up of him in an old Polyhedron magazine that I wrote, but it was somewhat invalidated by the random "tiefling" comment in Silver Marches. I think George has worked out a possible "fix", but I can't remember where. George?

--Eric

--
http://www.ericlboyd.com/dnd/
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GothicDan
Master of Realmslore

USA
1103 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2006 :  19:32:31  Show Profile  Visit GothicDan's Homepage Send GothicDan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Why was he changed to a Tiefling? *ponder*

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Wandering_mage
Senior Scribe

688 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2006 :  22:32:34  Show Profile  Visit Wandering_mage's Homepage Send Wandering_mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, Tulrun isn't a tiefling anymore so that might fix everything right there. Problem solved. I am really just so curious about all the wizards mentioned. Tulrun is just the beginning! Although knowing that Master scribe Eric L Boyd wrote some stuff on him makes me wonder why I haven't heard more of this tent dwelling wizard. -Scratches beard and looks up in thought.- He is a tent dwelling wizard right? I mean, it seems implied at least.

Illum
The Wandering Mage
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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USA
36142 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2006 :  22:43:47  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

Well, Tulrun isn't a tiefling anymore so that might fix everything right there. Problem solved. I am really just so curious about all the wizards mentioned. Tulrun is just the beginning! Although knowing that Master scribe Eric L Boyd wrote some stuff on him makes me wonder why I haven't heard more of this tent dwelling wizard. -Scratches beard and looks up in thought.- He is a tent dwelling wizard right? I mean, it seems implied at least.



Tulrun has been around for a while... He at least had a spell in the Old Grey Box...

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Wandering_mage
Senior Scribe

688 Posts

Posted - 19 Jul 2006 :  23:21:52  Show Profile  Visit Wandering_mage's Homepage Send Wandering_mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I wish they would make another Pages from the Mages with updated info specifically from Blackstaff and other great books..... but mostly Blackstaff. Master Scribe Schend has told a tale that bears the markings of legend and I would know the spells that were referred to as new in the book.

Here's a funny thought, I can talk about Myth Drannor, Waterdeep, the Anauroch desert, Twisted Rune, Drow, the North, magical items, archmages of the North, Luskan during Laeral's rule, the Crown Wars, the tragedy of Myrietar(misspelled probably), the faithful of Oghma, ancient artifacts, Khelben Arunsun's history, and......... the chosen of Mystra and I am still on topic concerning the book Blackstaff. I'm outta breath typing all of that. Once again. Awesome job Steve!

Illum
The Wandering Mage
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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
6477 Posts

Posted - 20 Jul 2006 :  00:58:51  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Eric wrote up Tulrun in magnificent style for Polyhedron. I wish he'd done more of those wizard write-ups.

When "Silver Marches" came out, it was obvious that whoever wrote on Tulrun had access to Ed's sketchy notes on him and hadn't read the Polyhedron article. I'm guessing that the "powers that be" and not Ed made him a tiefling. A very 3E thing to do.

How did he become a tiefling? I postulated in my North Timeline that he ran across a rather nasty Netherese curse that transformed him.

I don't think I'm stealing Steven's thunder by confessing that I asked him to 'fix' this situation and have the Ritual cleanse and redeem Tulrun and others (including Rhymallos). To Steven's credit, generous soul that he is, he took the idea on board and ran with it magnificently. It sounds like it's all worked out rather well. At the very least, Tulrun is an Uthgardt barbarian human again!

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus

Edited by - George Krashos on 20 Jul 2006 00:59:37
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Wandering_mage
Senior Scribe

688 Posts

Posted - 20 Jul 2006 :  02:00:06  Show Profile  Visit Wandering_mage's Homepage Send Wandering_mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Wow. George, awesome background. Just goes to show how comrades in lore can help each other.

I definitely thought Ryhmallos returning to his true form was an amazingly touching turn of events. I don't quite know his story off the top of my head but I know what he probably went through.

Tulrun and Ryhmallos. Two small peices in a huge tapestry. Bit parts that spoke thousands of words in Blackstaff. Brilliant! (Said like the Guinness brothers or who ever they are....I drink wine only anyways.)

Illum
The Wandering Mage
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El Magnifico Uno
Learned Scribe

113 Posts

Posted - 20 Jul 2006 :  19:35:31  Show Profile  Visit El Magnifico Uno's Homepage Send El Magnifico Uno a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Must... get... help!... Plot.. collapsing.. from too... many... characters... Strain.. too... much... Can't.. take.. any.. more.. Aaaaiieeee!!! *THUMP*...

Liked the book overall, but things really started getting bogged down towards the end.. Spent waaayyy too much time name-dropping and lost track of the spectacular self-sacrifice finale with the tear-jerking emotional impact.. Just seemed scattered at the end.. Blah blah blah stupid bigot elfy turd has vision blah blah blah look my scars are healing blah blah oh and Khelben dies.. Not really the gut punch it should have been.. Side character stories are a bit better in the beginning and middle of the tale, not at the crescendo where they detract..

Also, the telukiira.. No more super-power-up pills WOTC.. This has been overused too much already in various forms and other books.. Two "get an elf gem and become a supermage" stories in one year is more than enough.. No more, you're done..

And of course the obligatory romance.. Standard hackneyed Realms fare that I believe the editors mandate upon the poor hapless story regardless of whether or not it actually fits the plot (sappy romance apparently sells).. "Hey I'm a hottie redhead (of course) half-elf and you're a sexy rogue! Lets fight, fall in love at first sight, have perhaps 6 hours total of actual contact with each other, and then run off and shag at the end of the book to live happily ever after."..

But overall still a good book! Liked the history bits of Khelben's life.. Liked the insights into his character and how he developed into who he is/was.. Liked that his sacrifce was for something worthwhile with High Magic and the whole bit.. Liked the huge epic scope.. Liked that a prime villain didn't get killed and is still in the picture for later use.. Like that we have a reborn dream of Myth Drannor.. And like that it was pretty well written for a Realms book.. Good job!

P.S. What was Larloch doing at the time? Would think he would have an opinion one way or the other, and not just be apathetic about the High Moor..
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GothicDan
Master of Realmslore

USA
1103 Posts

Posted - 20 Jul 2006 :  19:46:02  Show Profile  Visit GothicDan's Homepage Send GothicDan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Granted, Khelben had a heck of a lot more reason to be messing around with Kiira than a certain other "elf" I could name... ;)

Planescape Fanatic

"Fiends and Undead are the peanut butter and jelly of evil." - Me
"That attitude should be stomped on, whenever and wherever it's encountered, because it makes people holding such views bad citizens, not just bad roleplayers (considering D&D was structured as a 'forced cooperation' game, and although successive editions are pointing it more and more towards a me-first, min-max game, the drift away from 'we all need each other to succeed' will at some point make it 'no longer' D&D)." - ED GREENWOOD
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Wandering_mage
Senior Scribe

688 Posts

Posted - 20 Jul 2006 :  21:26:40  Show Profile  Visit Wandering_mage's Homepage Send Wandering_mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by El Magnifico Uno

Must... get... help!... Plot.. collapsing.. from too... many... characters... Strain.. too... much... Can't.. take.. any.. more.. Aaaaiieeee!!! *THUMP*...

Liked the book overall, but things really started getting bogged down towards the end.. Spent waaayyy too much time name-dropping and lost track of the spectacular self-sacrifice finale with the tear-jerking emotional impact.. Just seemed scattered at the end.. Blah blah blah stupid bigot elfy turd has vision blah blah blah look my scars are healing blah blah oh and Khelben dies.. Not really the gut punch it should have been.. Side character stories are a bit better in the beginning and middle of the tale, not at the crescendo where they detract..

Also, the telukiira.. No more super-power-up pills WOTC.. This has been overused too much already in various forms and other books.. Two "get an elf gem and become a supermage" stories in one year is more than enough.. No more, you're done..

And of course the obligatory romance.. Standard hackneyed Realms fare that I believe the editors mandate upon the poor hapless story regardless of whether or not it actually fits the plot (sappy romance apparently sells).. "Hey I'm a hottie redhead (of course) half-elf and you're a sexy rogue! Lets fight, fall in love at first sight, have perhaps 6 hours total of actual contact with each other, and then run off and shag at the end of the book to live happily ever after."..

But overall still a good book! Liked the history bits of Khelben's life.. Liked the insights into his character and how he developed into who he is/was.. Liked that his sacrifce was for something worthwhile with High Magic and the whole bit.. Liked the huge epic scope.. Liked that a prime villain didn't get killed and is still in the picture for later use.. Like that we have a reborn dream of Myth Drannor.. And like that it was pretty well written for a Realms book.. Good job!

P.S. What was Larloch doing at the time? Would think he would have an opinion one way or the other, and not just be apathetic about the High Moor..



What would Khelben do? What would Khelben do?! Calming down and I'm good. Interesting points Uno. I regret that you didn't find it as enjoyable as I.

On the subject of the elves being a bit put out at the end, well that would be my reaction if you told me that some one else is going to bring back an ancient homeland of my people. Frankly, it happens in real life all too often. Instead of working together without any complaint, every one fights over petty stuff and then some one always needs to calm the situation and lead a diverse group to accomplish an epic task. (Ualair, Eliminster, and Khelben's death stare!)

As to love and its depiction. I never question love or romance. If you understand it please educate us all.

On elves with magical gems I can not say much. I have only read one book with a gem wielding elf/half-elf. This one.

Totally agree with you on the historical glimpses of Khelben's life. How fitting! Sweet water and light laughter ya'll.

Illum
The Wandering Mage
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Rinonalyrna Fathomlin
Great Reader

USA
7106 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  01:52:00  Show Profile  Visit Rinonalyrna Fathomlin's Homepage Send Rinonalyrna Fathomlin a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

As to love and its depiction. I never question love or romance. If you understand it please educate us all.


One doesn't have to understand love fully to be able to criticize it's depicition in a novel. I can't comment on the romance personally (haven't read far enough yet), but I don't agree that any writing about romance, no matter how poorly done, can be excused with a "we don't understand love and how it works anyway, oh well" rationalization.

quote:
On elves with magical gems I can not say much. I have only read one book with a gem wielding elf/half-elf. This one.



Last Mythal trilogy--that's all I have to say. The major, major plot points of the first two novels involve gaining great magical powers just by using an elven gem. Again, I can't commentyet on what happens in THIS novel, specifically, but the usage of the elven loregem in Last Mythal felt like cheating, and a deus ex machina.

"Instead of asking why we sleep, it might make sense to ask why we wake. Perchance we live to dream. From that perspective, the sea of troubles we navigate in the workaday world might be the price we pay for admission to another night in the world of dreams."
--Richard Greene (letter to Time)
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GothicDan
Master of Realmslore

USA
1103 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  05:03:27  Show Profile  Visit GothicDan's Homepage Send GothicDan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Easy way to get around the Elven tradition of High Magic, it was.

I have a feeling that it was hardly the same in this novel.. But I'm still (slowly) on my way through it, myself. :)

Planescape Fanatic

"Fiends and Undead are the peanut butter and jelly of evil." - Me
"That attitude should be stomped on, whenever and wherever it's encountered, because it makes people holding such views bad citizens, not just bad roleplayers (considering D&D was structured as a 'forced cooperation' game, and although successive editions are pointing it more and more towards a me-first, min-max game, the drift away from 'we all need each other to succeed' will at some point make it 'no longer' D&D)." - ED GREENWOOD
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Wandering_mage
Senior Scribe

688 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  12:16:59  Show Profile  Visit Wandering_mage's Homepage Send Wandering_mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Rinonalyrna Fathomlin

quote:
Originally posted by Wandering_mage

As to love and its depiction. I never question love or romance. If you understand it please educate us all.


One doesn't have to understand love fully to be able to criticize it's depicition in a novel. I can't comment on the romance personally (haven't read far enough yet), but I don't agree that any writing about romance, no matter how poorly done, can be excused with a "we don't understand love and how it works anyway, oh well" rationalization.

quote:
On elves with magical gems I can not say much. I have only read one book with a gem wielding elf/half-elf. This one.



Last Mythal trilogy--that's all I have to say. The major, major plot points of the first two novels involve gaining great magical powers just by using an elven gem. Again, I can't commentyet on what happens in THIS novel, specifically, but the usage of the elven loregem in Last Mythal felt like cheating, and a deus ex machina.



The Wandering mage reaches up and takes off his elven lore gem with a sad frown. Turns and slumps as he walks away. Turning sadly he says," Elven lore gems can be fun." Ah, I'm silly! I actually like the idea of Elven lore gems and how Steve had Khelben adjust one for Tsarra specifically. It adds some flexible possibilities to FR gamers own games (Never say never ). I can't comment on on the Final Gate series though. I would also say that the random possibilities of the reaction the gem would have due to the odd nature of its uses by a half-elf, Khelben adjusting it a bit, and the memory recall of Khelben's experiences worked out well for the story. Bravo! This is just my opinion.

Ah love. It is abstract and hardly factually based. To each person their own! For now though I agree with you Rinonalyrna to an extent.

Illum
The Wandering Mage
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Hoondatha
Great Reader

USA
2449 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  12:54:58  Show Profile  Visit Hoondatha's Homepage Send Hoondatha a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There is some precedent for Araevin learning high magic through a kiira, bypassing the normal route. The High Mages of Seros did the same thing in preparation for the Iakhovas war. Though it took those high lore gems about 15 years to force feed their knowledge into their bearers. On the other hand, Araevin's kiira was significantly older and more powerful.

But this is a Blackstaff thread. Considering that Steven was the person who introduced kiira N'Vaelahr, I'm sort of glad they show up in his book.

Doggedly converting 3e back to what D&D should be...
Sigh... And now 4e as well.
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1686 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  12:58:32  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Hoondatha

What I want to know is, now that Khelben's dead, are his agreements with Fzoul and Sappiraktar void? Or are they with "the Blackstaff" and therefore grandfathered over to Tsara? And what do the affected parties feel about all this?



All agreements remain in force, both out of the letter of the agreements and due to the fact that Khelben's been reported dead in the past and he's come back. That's enough to keep the fear of him in Fzoul and others in the mix and thus check them.

Besides, since we've already seen that Tsarra can alter her self visually to appear as Khelben, only those in the ritual know he's actually and truly dead. How long she could maintain the illusions that Khelben is alive is....

Hm. An applause of crawling claws just appeared to scratch out NDA into the hardwood floors of the home office. Guess I'd better be quiet now.

Steven

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1686 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  13:01:42  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Lore Seeker

I have a question. Did I overlook something or do we never really learn the fate of the Dreamer (I forget her first name)? I know that Tsarra having the spririts of Khelben and the Dreamer inside her fulfilled the prophecy. We know that Khelben "dies" but does it say what happened to the Dreamer? Is her spirit restored? Is she sacrificed for the use of her visions for the high magic ritual? Is her spirit still with Tsarra inside the belt?



Sorry about that dropped plot thread. I'd planned a scene at the end where Tsarra visits the Dreamer in her new state, but as I already was running long, it never got developed. My bad.

Danthra still exists in a new state in Rhymanthiin. Think of it as a combination of visiting Sylune in Shadowdale, the Oracle at Delphi, and the Mouth of Truth in Rome (think Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday). She's a whisper in the ear of penitents seeking oracular advice, and she's able to manifest visually when the moon is more than half full (but only as a wispy ghostlike figure).

That help? Again, apologies for leaving her hanging there....

Steven

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1686 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  13:08:17  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by SirUrza

Did I miss something here? What was the point of the elves retaking Cormanthyr (and re-establishing it) if Blackstaff was just going to sacrifice himself to raise another lost city?

I wouldn't call this a Realms shaking event. Waterdeep shaking event more like it. Khelben is gone and Laeral is basically in exile pretty much shifts the balance of power in Waterdeep I'd say.





Cormanthyr was the greatest elven civilization in LIVING ELF MEMORY and thus restoring it would be important as a symbol.

Khelben & Co. simply restored one city of the greatest magical realm of the elves, but one long dropped away from easy memory. Faertelmiir, the city that became Rhymanthiin in its new incarnation, was the Library City of Miyeritar and thus the repository of much of the knowledge of High Magic and other magic that realm knew.

Both acts are important for different reasons. Myth Drannor is a more potent symbol for most, including the elves, because it's always been there. Rhymanthiin/Faertelmiir is important to historians and wizards in the access to lore long lost millennia ago.

And while many can find out about Myth Drannor easily, learning about Rhymanthiin beyond vague whispers and hints (like books written to hide the truth but lead the cogent to it) will be tougher. It's an open secret only to those who were there and you readers. It'll take a while for the Realms as a whole to know about the Hidden City of Hope, and even longer to get there. Think of it as Avalon/Xanadu/Brigadoon--it's a mythical city that only appears briefly to worthies and never for very long.

I'm hoping to write up more on Rhymanthiin soon, but other things loom to eat up my time right now. Maybe by year's end....

Steven

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1686 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  13:22:11  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by KnightErrantJR

Okay, very mundane question to start, but I have to work into such a momentous grouping of chapters as the last few turned out to be. Was the staff that was "driving" the tower essentially acting as a Spelljamming helm? Did it drain Gamalon's spells for the day once he flew the tower? (and why would Raegar, raised in the Realms, assume that there is no air outside of Toril's atmosphere . . . not a bit deal, that one, just wondering)


Yes, the staff acts as a spelljamming helm (and a tip of the hat in my using my oldest D&D character as a Spelljammer mouthpiece way back in Dragon 1990). Yes it drained spells; he flew by use of an item.

Don't have an easy answer for you on Raegar; perhaps he's read some theories that he filched from wizards over the years?

quote:

I liked how Elminster came across in this one. His appearance was brief but effective. The exchange with the elves reminded me of something Steven was talking about last year or so, about Khelben being more the "Batman" and Elminster being more the "Superman." I think this was kind of reinforced with the fact that Khelben expected everyone to realize how important what they were doing was and to quick squabbling and get down to business, but Elminster did the "diplomatic thing" to smooth things over, with Khelben's ending retort being that they should have done their part without having to be convinced. I loved it. It encapsulated the difference between Khelben and Elminster and how they operate.


Exactly what I was shooting for, so thanks. Glad the scenes worked.

quote:

I loved the Dead Man's Walk, and I loved the idea that so much of this book focused on other magical traditions besides the Netherese and the like. It was very good to see a lot more "southern" influence from the Lands of Intrigue involved.

Even though I saw the spoilers before I finished the book, the ending was still like a punch to the gut. I have loved Khelben since I first read about him, when I first fell in love with Waterdeep. The one thing that I was sad about was that, it has seemed in the past that Khelben and Peirgeron were pretty good friends, and yet we didn't get to see Peirgeron mourn the loss of his friend. I know given the situation, it wasn't a logical thing to see, but it is sad.


I regret we didn't get to work Piergeiron or other Lords into the story. Even so, it may be some time before Piergeiron learns that the Blackstaff is no longer Khelben.....

quote:

A question though . . . is there any chance of Khelben the Younger returning to Waterdeep? I was wondering if this might happen, if only so that Khelben's enemies might think him still alive, and focus their attention on him rather than the new, true Blackstaff, Tsarra. Just wondering.



Khelben's enemies will be kept in the dark as long as possible, as will his friends (beyond those at the end of the book). As for the return of Khelben "Ravencloak"? It's not for me to say or speculate, really.

Steven

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Steven Schend
Forgotten Realms Designer & Author

USA
1686 Posts

Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  13:27:11  Show Profile  Visit Steven Schend's Homepage Send Steven Schend a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

I really, really enjoyed this novel... The name fits it, as well. We see part of how Khelben became the Blackstaff, and, at the same time, we see the shaping of a new Blackstaff. It kinda makes me wonder if there was someone called the Blackstaff before Khelben...

And wow, was that a who's who of prominent mages, or what? Seeing so many mages that we've only seen in sourcebooks was great, too.

I'm really interested to see how this shakes up the status quo...

When's your next book, Steven?



The only person close to being "a Blackstaff" before Khelben was his paternal uncle, Sarael Maerdrymm, from whose Duskstaff was born the true Blackstaff (in the Prologue and such). Nothing is known about him other than he's an elder half brother to Arun and a full elf. And he was a great and powerful wizard of Myth Drannor, but not one among the military or magical powers of the city (i.e. he worked for himself and his clan, no one else).

However, Khelben held him with enough regard that his first son was named Sarael after him. This suggests that perhaps not all Maerdrymms regarded their human born kin with total disdain.

Steven
Dropping more hints and ideas after himself

PS: If and when I get another book contract and am cleared to talk about it, I'll let y'all know.

For current projects and general natter, see www.steveneschend.com
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Wandering_mage
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Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  13:37:39  Show Profile  Visit Wandering_mage's Homepage Send Wandering_mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
How did Mentor Wintercloak and company come back to life? Are they Baelnorn? The same goes for Ualair and Rhymallos? Did they have a contingency spell in place for this event? Just curious.

Illum
The Wandering Mage
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Acolyte

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Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  13:52:28  Show Profile  Visit Lore Seeker's Homepage Send Lore Seeker a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend


Sorry about that dropped plot thread. I'd planned a scene at the end where Tsarra visits the Dreamer in her new state, but as I already was running long, it never got developed. My bad.

Danthra still exists in a new state in Rhymanthiin. Think of it as a combination of visiting Sylune in Shadowdale, the Oracle at Delphi, and the Mouth of Truth in Rome (think Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday). She's a whisper in the ear of penitents seeking oracular advice, and she's able to manifest visually when the moon is more than half full (but only as a wispy ghostlike figure).

That help? Again, apologies for leaving her hanging there....

Steven



Yeah that helps. Good explanation. And yes, I accept your apology.

"So let it be written.....that I might read it."
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BobROE
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Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  14:14:27  Show Profile  Visit BobROE's Homepage Send BobROE a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Did the ritual clense the entire high moor? Or just the area in and around the city?
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Wooly Rupert
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Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  17:18:00  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend

I regret we didn't get to work Piergeiron or other Lords into the story. Even so, it may be some time before Piergeiron learns that the Blackstaff is no longer Khelben.....


So, will Tsarra become a Lord of Waterdeep?

Also, the way you pulled together so much stuff you'd written made me wonder just how long this story was in the planning stage... And the way you used all that stuff had me wondering if Garnet was going to show up, as well!

Oh, and I also wanted to say that I liked the way Tsarra cast spells, and Khelben's comment on training sorcerers.

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 21 Jul 2006 17:21:37
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Wooly Rupert
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Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  17:24:48  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Steven Schend


Yes, the staff acts as a spelljamming helm (and a tip of the hat in my using my oldest D&D character as a Spelljammer mouthpiece way back in Dragon 1990). Yes it drained spells; he flew by use of an item.


That was a nice touch! I didn't recognize Gamalon in the prologue until I actually had the novel in my hand -- that's when the gem for an eye part caught my attention. When he actually came on-screen, I was happy to see that you'd managed to use him!

Hmmm... Maybe I should dust off my first character and use him for something. I only got to play him twice, and my original character sheet for him disappeared years ago, but neither fact is a real impediment...

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Acolyte

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Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  18:14:39  Show Profile  Visit Lore Seeker's Homepage Send Lore Seeker a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert


So, will Tsarra become a Lord of Waterdeep?




Hmm, I was under the impression that Khelben was no longer a Lord of Waterdeep. Am I wrong about that?

If I'm not wrong then it wouldn't really be logical for Tsarra to become a Lord of Waterdeep. And based on Mr. Schend's comments, it sounds like Tsarra will make frequent use of her ability to change her appearance to look like Khelben. It seems a great effort will be made to keep Khelben's death a secret for as long as possible.

"So let it be written.....that I might read it."
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Wooly Rupert
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Posted - 21 Jul 2006 :  21:32:53  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Lore Seeker

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert


So, will Tsarra become a Lord of Waterdeep?




Hmm, I was under the impression that Khelben was no longer a Lord of Waterdeep. Am I wrong about that?

If I'm not wrong then it wouldn't really be logical for Tsarra to become a Lord of Waterdeep. And based on Mr. Schend's comments, it sounds like Tsarra will make frequent use of her ability to change her appearance to look like Khelben. It seems a great effort will be made to keep Khelben's death a secret for as long as possible.



City of Splendors: Waterdeep had Khelben rejoining their ranks.

If Tsarra puts on Khelben's Lord's Effects and gets caught, the penalty is death. She can fake being Khelben, but putting on his Lord's goodies has a serious price.

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Acolyte

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Posted - 22 Jul 2006 :  16:37:48  Show Profile  Visit Lore Seeker's Homepage Send Lore Seeker a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

City of Splendors: Waterdeep had Khelben rejoining their ranks.




Thanks Wooly. I've not yet had the chance to read that one but it is on my list.

"So let it be written.....that I might read it."
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