Minx Lissanda’s Release from a Fell Bespelling
(Crossing, Zoluren: 78 Ka’len 360)
I woke up and was stretching my legs about town when I noticed that Lissanda was on the Green. I had not yet gotten up to Riverhaven for the Bardic Knot, and so I asked Tyler to see if he could hang on to her while I made a quick trip up north.
The trip was uneventful, but was certainly my quickest visit to Riverhaven.
When I returned to the Crossing, neither Tyler nor Lissanda was where I had left them. Alas!
But Tyler had left a quiet word with Eustice, who told me where to look for them, and so I headed to the beach at the Strand to greet them.
Tyler had indeed stuck close to her, and when she was being overwhelmed by all the people in town, he had gallantly whisked her to a quiet spot.
We visited again, and exchanged songs. I gave her the Bardic Knot earrings I had selected for her in Riverhaven. For a few minutes, I thought she was going to refuse them. But thanks to all the Thirteen, she did not.
She told us that the music in the Knot was even fainter. This worried me.
Time drew on and she said she needed to get back to the Keep, lest he be angry at us.
This worried me, too.
So we said our farewells for the night, truth be told, the sun was almost up.
The next day, as I got into town, people were already dieing frequently up near Sorrow’s Reach. I saw Sadiaer cast Fire Rain into areas filled by empaths and clerics, trying to help the fallen and the nearly dead right out on the Trade Route.
I was travelling back to the Trade Route to help again when Tyler and I saw Garfaldo and Lissanda. He was speaking harshly — trying to knock some sense into her, I think.
She cowered, flinched at his every move. You could see the pain his words brought to her, and the struggle. She would start to believe him, and then … touch that thrice damned charm, and deny it all.
Suddenly Garfaldo grabbed her by the shoulders and slapped her, trying to get her attention away from the charm. I was too stunned to even speak. My jaw hit the ground. The crowd was gathering, She was beginning to sob, and Garfaldo still had his voice raised.
I honestly did not know what to do. Sadiaer fixed that for me. He showed up, telling people not to bother Lissanda, she was ‘his.’
That irked me. I guarded her. Garfaldo and others turned their attention to getting rid of Sadiaer. That is much easier said than done sometimes. He cast Fire Rain, several times and places, and bade Lissanda to run quickly from it. I dragged Tyler once from the awful stuff. He saved me the next.
We retreated with some unfortunate fallen victims further down the Trade Route and to town.
The next thing I know, Lissanda’s thoughts are reaching out, asking to see me in the last place where we exchanged songs. So I fumbled around with those fell new gwethdesuans until I could tell her I was there.
She arrived, escorted by Garfaldo. It seems he was still trying to talk some sense into her, but she had retreated firmly into the full denial which that thrice-damned charm afforded her.
Suddenly there was word that Stone Clan itself was being attacked. Garfaldo explained he had a duty to help defend it and excused himself.
Lissanda gazed after him. I am ever so glad I noticed that.
Her conversation drifted in and out. She could sense the many deaths, but the charm kept her from actually hearing our answers when she kept asking why they were dieing. She seemed on a ragged edge, and fell down, sobbing, at one point.
Lissanda said, haggardly, "Love … tis all I seek …"
And in a moment of what was probably desperation, I hope Garfaldo forgives me for it, I called him back from the defense of Stone Clan.
She seemed to fix on Garfaldo, and, well, it seemed the thing to do.
I warned him in quiet whispers that she was fragile, and he best speak gently this time. I do not think it took him too long to realize that she paid far more attention to him than anyone else.
I do not know how long we stood there at the Beach, trying to think of some way to reach around the power the charm had on her. Garfaldo tried to bring her memories back to the time she was captive … but when she started to remember the bad that had happened to her, her hand flew to that obsidian charm.
More and more people started to trickle in, until there were just too many there for her to deal with, and she went off somewhere quiet.
It was a frustrating time. Nobody knew what to do to free her of the charm’s binding spell.
People dispersed to go back to help with the defense of the Clan. Tyler, Keverick, and I set out along the Northern Trade Route to see if we could help among the many fallen.
We did not get too far when we sensed the death of Sadiaer. I am not sure any of us had time to do more than smirk when suddenly Lissanda was struck down.
With the help of a moon mage, we were able to find her out near the crater. Nothing was there to kill her, she said she had just died. Her chest and head bore a terrible witness that whatever had ripped her apart had been too sudden and awful for her to even bleed to death. She had been looking for a quiet place, but did not want to go back to the Keep to find it.
This was a frightening situation now, it seems she died when Sadiaer did. Even though they were separated by quite a distance and nothing at all struck her.
We got her back on her feet compliments of the Cleric Guild, and took her out to my cottage in Kaerna. It was quiet enough there for her to regain her strength.
I do not even remember what we talked about. It must have been idle talk, because my mind was going in circles, trying to think of some way to get her from the grip of that charm.
We all decided after a bit of rest that we would go up the Trade Route and try to help with those who were fallen. Yes, Lissanda, too.
I no sooner had locked the door of my house than Sadiaer was dead again. Someone gasped. Tyler, quicker than any of us, reached out his healing touch to her…
Just as she died.
I do not think even 5 heartbeats had gone by between her death and Sadiaer’s.
The worst was now clearly confirmed.
Garfaldo’s familiar was already there, her sister and Prayk came soon, as well as Garfaldo, and with a few pink runes, they had her memories protected.
Her sister asked for a glyph for her which Candidus was able to provide.
I took the moment she was travelling back from the temple to explain to Garfaldo that she seemed rather interested in him. He looked like this was news to him!
In the meanwhile, Stone Clan’s gates had been breached, but the Book was successfully defended. I have no details in this, but I heard several things that indicated Magus Prayk had an instrumental hand in its defense.
When Lissanda returned from the temple, she was still pretty shaken from death, and clearly doubting herself. She was torn by her own fierce will and soul and that damnable charm. Every little while her voice would tremble and drift off, as if questioning what she was saying.
Garfaldo went to have a quiet talk with her — alone. In light of what I had revealed to him, I was more than a bit anxious about her.
Her sister had sent her a cuddly ranger doll via a very handsome wolf. When Garfaldo and Lissanda returned, the doll was in her arms.
Garfaldo had given her a special pin of his.
She was still shaky, though. When it looked like there was a breakthrough and she could hear the truth, she would reach for the charm, and find it’s fell reassurance covering the questions rising in her.
Garfaldo quietly reminded her of the pin, guiding her hand to that instead. She smile at him.
What to do next was quickly no issue, for Sadiaer himself showed up.
We heard the voice of Sadiaer say, "Lissanda come away from them, you know Prayk has already found what he needs in Kaelie’s arms. He will never take you back, you are mine."
"Come away now!" he commanded her.
Everyone stood quickly, and in the next moment, the full fury of battle began to buzz, all of it headed towards Sadiaer. Lissanda even advanced on him!
I could not say which wounded him more, or last. No doubt the final blow was a culmination of the mind blast, spiders, icepatch, arrows, lightning, and probably other things I failed to notice.
Sadiaer seemed bent on targetting only Darsanya. Which was probably not endearing him to the wavering Lissana.
It was not long, though, and Sadiaer was struck down.
Before any of us could even holler out the warning about Lissanda, she was dead, too.
We heard the ghostly voice of Sadiaer exclaim, "Fools! She is mine!"
Without another word, his corpse evaporated into a purple mist, and was gone to recouperate somewhere else.
Lissanda’s body lay broken and bleeding on the ground, and once more, a few pink runes assured her memories and made ready her departure.
"The charm, no glyph this time," were Darsanya’s instructions. Nobody argued with her.
This quiet little neighborhood in Kaerna had erupted in a terror-filled moment, and was now quiet again. Garfaldo went to meet Lissanda at the temple to escort her back.
Darsanya said, "I say we see if’n Garfaldo can get it, they seem to be….." she looked at me.
I looked at Darsanya and shruggred, offering, "Pinned?" as my only word to complete the sentence.
We all agreed that it seemed best to have Garfaldo attempt to retrieve it.
When Garfaldo arrived with Lissanda, Darsanya instructed him to dig for the charm. She told her sister, "Liss you take one step toward that grave and I web ya."
Garfaldo and Tesalan dug at the grave until it was open. Garfaldo retrieved the obsidian charm, and Lissanda proceeded to get the rest of her things.
While she was distracted with that, Garfaldo turned his back and dropped the charm into his mortar. He started grinding away at it.
Lissanda peered into her grave, asking, "The charm?"
Garfaldo plucked his pin from it and handed it to her, "Here is your charm."
As Tyler healed everyone, and Lissanda retrieved her things, Garfaldo was still trying to crack the charm.
Lissanda looked rather lost and confused.
Prayk asked Lissanda, "Are you feeling better?"
A dreadful crack issued from the mortar in Garfaldo’s hand, as light exploded from it. Garfaldo was left with only a stump for a hand. There was no sign of the thrice-damned obsidian charm.
Prayk said, "If Sadiaer is making these, he has alot more skill then I gave him credit for"
Darsanya and Ogredd said nearly at the same time, "Unless someone else is making them for him."
To clarify things, Lissanda was asked, "Lissanda, you saw the charm being carved, right? by Sadiaer?"
Lissanda nodded, "Aye, he carved it for me"
Lissanda asked suddenly, "The charm? What was wrong with the charm?"
Hawkman said, "Charm Bad."
I tried the gentle approach, "Well, it blew up on its own. What does that suggest?"
Lissanda looked thoughtful.
Jadelynn glanced at Lissanda and asked, "Lissanda, are ye still in love with Sadiaer?"
Lissanda blinked at her in amazement.
Jadelynn said, "Aye lass, it’s what you claimed."
Lissanda said slowly, "I know I was …"
Lissanda frowned, "But I do nae think … "
I asked, "How do you feel about him now?" I think we were all holding our breaths. I know I was.
Lissanda says, "He’s a madman"
And there was much rejoicing.
Lissanda was still pale looking, "If ye all will excuse me … I … I am nae running, Dars … but … I need a moment or two to compose myself …"
Lissanda looked up at Garfaldo imploringly.
Garfaldo said, "You’ve been through a lot.. t’day.." and stood next to Lissanda.
Lissanda began to ask of Garfaldo, "Will ye …" and gnawed on her lip anxiously.
Garfaldo prompted her gently, "Will I what?"
Lissanda asked, "Will ye accompany me, please?"
Garfaldo replied, "I’d think of no greater pleasure," and joined her.
Lissanda let out a long sigh of relief and they went off.
There was still much rejoicing.
Two victories in battle this day held. The book is still safe in Stone Clan, and Lissanda is freed of Sadiaer’s will.